Predicting Consumers’ Selfishness Versus Predicting a Consumer’S Selfishness: Asymmetries in Forecasts For Individuals Versus Collectives

Clayton R. Critcher, UC Berkeley, USA
David Dunning, Cornell University, USA
Forecasts of individuals (“How likely is a consumer to…”) and forecasts of collectives (“What percentage of consumers…”) are logically equivalent, but 5 studies show that collectives are predicted to be more selfish than individuals. The asymmetry emerges because forecasts of consumers’ (vs. a consumer’s) behavior are driven by distinct considerations.
[ to cite ]:
Clayton R. Critcher and David Dunning (2011) ,"Predicting Consumers’ Selfishness Versus Predicting a Consumer’S Selfishness: Asymmetries in Forecasts For Individuals Versus Collectives ", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 39, eds. Rohini Ahluwalia, Tanya L. Chartrand, and Rebecca K. Ratner, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 163.