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Towards a behavioral ecology of consumption: delay‐reduction effects on foraging in a simulated Internet mall

Towards a behavioral ecology of consumption: delay‐reduction effects on foraging in a simulated... Young adults shopped for music compact disks in a five store simulated Internet mall. In stock probability in all stores was constant at 0.80, but each store was associated with either a 0.5, 2, 4, 8, or 16 second to a feedback message indicating whether a particular disk was in stock or out of stock at that time. Working under a successive choice schedule, in Phase I subjects' behavior was in quantitative concordance with the Delay‐Reduction Hypothesis (DRH), and in Phase II, when a changeover delay was added, subjects' behavior conformed more closely to the predictions of the DRH. Hyperbolic discount functions provided the best fit to the data. This study extends the synthesis of foraging theory and operant psychology, known as behavioral ecology, to human consumption in an affluent post‐industrial culture, and provides the basis for an experimental analysis of human consumption. Extensions to research in consumer behavior, marketing strategy, and behavior on Internet services are proposed. Copyright © 2000 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Managerial and Decision Economics Wiley

Towards a behavioral ecology of consumption: delay‐reduction effects on foraging in a simulated Internet mall

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Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
Copyright © 2000 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
ISSN
0143-6570
eISSN
1099-1468
DOI
10.1002/mde.979
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Young adults shopped for music compact disks in a five store simulated Internet mall. In stock probability in all stores was constant at 0.80, but each store was associated with either a 0.5, 2, 4, 8, or 16 second to a feedback message indicating whether a particular disk was in stock or out of stock at that time. Working under a successive choice schedule, in Phase I subjects' behavior was in quantitative concordance with the Delay‐Reduction Hypothesis (DRH), and in Phase II, when a changeover delay was added, subjects' behavior conformed more closely to the predictions of the DRH. Hyperbolic discount functions provided the best fit to the data. This study extends the synthesis of foraging theory and operant psychology, known as behavioral ecology, to human consumption in an affluent post‐industrial culture, and provides the basis for an experimental analysis of human consumption. Extensions to research in consumer behavior, marketing strategy, and behavior on Internet services are proposed. Copyright © 2000 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Journal

Managerial and Decision EconomicsWiley

Published: Apr 1, 2000

References