Brain Basics: How Cognitive Systems Impact Judgment and Decision Making

Many people from different disciplines have spent a lot of time trying to understand how we make decisions. Economic theory, for instance, would have us believe that we make choices based on a rational evaluation of the consequences. Yet years of research within psychology, supported by neuroscience, finds that the way we go about making decisions isn’t always rational. Nor is it the result of a single cognitive process.
Although there is still much to learn, we now know that decision making is a very complex process that involves interaction among multiple subsystems of the brain, each of which is guided by different parameters and principles. Alan S. Sanfey—a cognitive ...

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