Mission (Largely) Accomplished: What’s Next for Consumer BDT-JDM Researchers?

Mission (Largely) Accomplished: What’s Next for Consumer BDT-JDM Researchers?

Journal of Marketing Behavior.
2015, Vol. 1, Pages 9-35

A main objective of Behavioral Decision Theory (BDT) research — demonstrating that economic theory often fails as a description of decision making as well as gaining insights into systematic influences on judgment and choice has been largely accomplished. This influential research program, published in psychology, decision making, marketing, and other fields, has had unique characteristics that combined criteria employed in economics and psychology. Now that the prominent portion of the BDT agenda has been largely completed, it is time to consider whether the BDT and greater judgment and decision making (JDM) community in marketing will pursue a new direction or just follow the topics of the day (e.g., current topics in social psychology, public policy applications of previous JDM findings). I propose a broad research area the interaction between the evolving information environment and consumer JDM that raises a wide range of important questions and may fit the skills and interests of BDT researchers. In addition to raising new JDM concepts and problems, the proposed area can lead to major revisions of long established frameworks of consumer behavior and marketing. It is far from obvious, however, that BDT researchers/marketing professors, who are accustomed to studying general purpose JDM topics and are aligned with the broader JDM and social psychology community, will be receptive to a consumer-centric research program.