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Time management problems and discounted utility


König, Cornelius J; Kleinmann, Martin (2007). Time management problems and discounted utility. Journal of Psychology: Interdisciplinary and Applied, 141(3):321-334.

Abstract

The lens of behavioral decision theory offers a new perspective for research on time management. The basic idea of this approach is that people discount future consequences of their time management decisions, meaning that they work on tasks with smaller but sooner outcomes rather than on tasks with larger but later outcomes. The authors performed 2 experimental studies to test whether people are sensitive to differences in the discounted utility of time management decisions. In Experiment 1, they used vignettes of typical time management situations; Experiment 2 was a laboratory simulation (an in-basket task that was part of a training assessment). Participants were 41 and 43 German university students, respectively. As expected, manipulating the discounted utility of options resulted in different time management decisions. In Experiment 1, reactions to time management situations were judged as less likely if the reactions had lower discounted utilities. In Experiment 2, people spent less time on an interruption.

The lens of behavioral decision theory offers a new perspective for research on time management. The basic idea of this approach is that people discount future consequences of their time management decisions, meaning that they work on tasks with smaller but sooner outcomes rather than on tasks with larger but later outcomes. The authors performed 2 experimental studies to test whether people are sensitive to differences in the discounted utility of time management decisions. In Experiment 1, they used vignettes of typical time management situations; Experiment 2 was a laboratory simulation (an in-basket task that was part of a training assessment). Participants were 41 and 43 German university students, respectively. As expected, manipulating the discounted utility of options resulted in different time management decisions. In Experiment 1, reactions to time management situations were judged as less likely if the reactions had lower discounted utilities. In Experiment 2, people spent less time on an interruption.

Citations

11 citations in Web of Science®
13 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Psychology
Dewey Decimal Classification:150 Psychology
Language:English
Date:2007
Deposited On:21 Jul 2014 15:02
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 17:59
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
ISSN:0022-3980
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.3200/JRLP.141.3.321-336

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