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A Model of Agenda Influences on Group Decisions

A Model of Agenda Influences on Group Decisions

Abstract

The impact of using an agenda to enhance the likelihood of a group selecting a particular alternative was investigated. Contexts in which a leader or other group member attempts to guide or control group decisions by establishing an agenda served as the background for this work. A theoretical model of agenda effects on group decisions was proposed to illustrate baseline probabilities of selecting a particular alternative under an agenda highlighting the alternative's best attributes. The implications of this model were demonstrated in ad hoc laboratory groups working under an agenda designed to favor a certain alternative. The demonstration showed that the favored alternative was chosen more often than expected by chance, and the rate at which the favored alternative was selected was close to the theoretical baseline in most cases. The discussion focused on how using agendas and other decision procedures can affect group performance and members' reactions to group experience.
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