Principal Investigator: Ronald Hübner
In many situations the accuracy of decisions increases with the time spent for collecting information. Consequently, if the available time is limited, there must be a tradeoff between deciding optimally and deciding quickly. According to sequential-sampling models, this speed-accuracy tradeoff is controlled by a criterion that specifies the amount of evidence needed to make a decision. An important question in this respect is to what extent decision makers can adjust this decision criterion to optimize their performance. Therefore, we will conduct a series of experiments in which different time-dependent incentive schemes are applied to investigate how flexibly individuals can adapt their decision criterion to varying conditions. Furthermore, a recently developed formal dual-process model will be used to model the results. Another research topic in this project concerns motivational aspects of decision making. Evidence suggests that under certain conditions, the reduced accuracy under time pressure can partly be counterbalanced by attentional effort mobilized by monetary incentives. We will investigate whether this is indeed the case, and if so, under which conditions monetary reward has a positive effect on performance. Finally, behavioural and electrophysiological data are collected to examine which processing stages in the mental system are affected by time pressure and monetary reward.