The Coherence Model of Preference and Belief Formation

  • Sun-Ki Chai
Conference paper

Rational choice is the dominant approach in the social sciences to modeling individual and collective behavior. Recently, however, a great deal of criticism has been directed at it, much of from practicioners of the approach itself. Perhaps the strongest criticism has been directed at rational choice's inadequate modeling of preferences and beliefs. The coherence model presented here accounts for preferences and beliefs in a way that is applicable across the full range of contexts where conventional rational choice models can be applied and is compatible with assumptions of rational optimization. It will be based on the assumption that individuals will adjust preferences and beliefs to minimize expected regret, where expected regret is defined as the difference in perceived expected utility between each action taken and the action retrospectively viewed as optimal. Coherence is defined as attaining a state of zero expected regret is referred to as coherence, and is seen as the ultimate "meta-goal" of individuals engaging in "choosing" their preferences and beliefs with a specified set of reality constraints. This model designed to integrate a range of empirical findings and theories about the construction of self from a variety of social science disciplines.


Utility Function Rational Choice Rational Optimization Belief Change Belief Formation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag US 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Hawai&i,Honolulu

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