Differential Moderating Effects of Procedural and Outcome Accountability on Perceived Decision Difficulty

yinlong zhang, University of texas at san antonio

Effects of Procedural and Outcome Accountability on Perceived Decision Difficulty

YINLONG ZHANG

University of Texas at San Antonio, San Antonio, TX 78249

VIKAS MITTAL

University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA 15260

 

When choosing between options that are better than the reference (BTR) or worse than the reference (WTR), consumers find that deciding among WTR options is more difficult than deciding amongst BTR options. We propose that the degree and type of accountability moderate the influence of decision framing (WTR or BTR) on perceived decision difficulty. Two studies offer convergent support for the hypothesized effects. Study 1 demonstrates that the difference in perceived difficulty for deciding between WTR and BTR is attenuated under procedural accountability (PA) but enhanced under outcome accountability (OA). Further, the differential effect between two types of accountability is more pronounced for high than for low accountability. Study 2 shows that the differential effect of PA and OA is stronger under low attractiveness than under high attractiveness of options and demonstrates that decision difficulty affects choice deferral as well.
[ to cite ]:
yinlong zhang (2006) ,"Differential Moderating Effects of Procedural and Outcome Accountability on Perceived Decision Difficulty", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 33, eds. Connie Pechmann and Linda Price, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 181-184.