Predicting a changing taste: Do people know what they will like?
Article first published online: 15 SEP 2006
Copyright © 1992 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Journal of Behavioral Decision Making
Volume 5, Issue 3, pages 187–200, July/September 1992
How to Cite
Kahneman, D. and Snell, J. (1992), Predicting a changing taste: Do people know what they will like?. J. Behav. Decis. Making, 5: 187–200. doi: 10.1002/bdm.3960050304
- Issue published online: 15 SEP 2006
- Article first published online: 15 SEP 2006
- Manuscript Revised: 13 DEC 1991
- Manuscript Received: 12 SEP 1990
- Office of Naval Research and by the SIoan Foundation
- Alfred P. Sloan Foundation
- Temporal preferences
A distinction is made between decision utility, experienced utility, and predicted utility and an experiment is reported addressing people's ability to forecast experienced utility. Subjects in two experiments made predictions of their future liking for stimuli to which they were then exposed daily for one week. The stimuli were ice cream in a pilot study, plain yogurt in the main study, and short musical pieces in both studies. Decreased liking was the modal prediction, even when the true outcome was increased liking, or reduced dislike. There was substantial stability of tastes, but there were also substantial individual differences in the size and even the sign of changes in liking with repeated exposure. There was little or no correlation between the predictions of hedonic change that individuals made and the changes they actually experienced.