Dissertation > Philosophy, religion > Psychology

The Impact of Betrayal on Risky Decision Making

Author LinJing
Tutor HeGuiBing
School Zhejiang University
Course Applied Psychology
Keywords betrayal betrayal aversion risky decision-making negative emotion risk evaluation loss aversion
Type Master's thesis
Year 2011
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Elangovan and Shapiro(1998), Finkel et al(2002) proposed that betrayal was the violation of trust expectations on which the trustor-trustee relationship was predicated. The betrayal was a voluntary act of the trustee, and the betrayal had the potential to harm the trustor. There are all kinds of negative responses to betrayal, including negative emotions, negative patterns of cognition and behavior.The aim of the present study was to explore the impact of betrayal on risk evaluation and risk preference and how this impact worked.There were two experiments in our study which explored the impact of betrayal aversion on risky decision making under the investment situation (Experiment 1) and the situation involving safety product choice (Experiment 2). In Experiment 1, we focused on the impact of betrayal on loss aversion (part a) and risk preference (part b). Also, we attempted to explore the role of negative emotion in the process of risky decision making.The main results were as follows:(1) Experiment 1-a showed that, loss aversion effect enhanced if the loss was due to the betrayal of others. Experimentl-b showed that, decision maker would like to choose the high level risk option if the low level risk option was connected with betrayal. We could find out that the risk preference was influenced by betrayal. Experiment2 showed that the risky decision making was also influenced when there was betrayal of objects. (2) The emotion response to the betrayal is different in different decision scenes. In the investment situation, betrayal induced obvious anger. In the safety product choice situation, betrayal induced obvious fear. (3) In the investment situation, the risk evaluation was overestimate if the loss is due to the betrayal. In the situation of safety product choice, the risk evaluations about both of the two options were influenced because of the betrayal. (4) The negative emotions induced by the betrayal did not influence the risk choice directly. We argued that the moral consideration was the key factor if there was betrayal in the risky decision making scene.

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