Northwestern speed dating study
To illustrate, consider a popular heuristic that people often employ, the so-called “recognition heuristic.” The recognition heuristic states that “if one of two objects is recognized and the other is not then we should infer that the recognized object has the higher value.” Such a decision rule may sound overly simplistic but various studies have supported its use and effectiveness.For example, in three studies predicting stock market performance, portfolios of stocks based on recognition (a constructed set of the most recognized stocks) outperformed (on average) managed funds, chance portfolios and stock expert predictions.Gerd Gigerenzer recently summarized more than a decade of research concerning the role of heuristics in human decision making.Gigerenzer argues that heuristics aren’t a cognitive shortcoming at all.
In essence, heuristics are decision-making tools that save effort by ignoring some information; and thus, their essential function is to reduce and simplify the processing of cues and information from our environment. In particular, prior research by Lenton and Francesconi suggests that when the number of potential speed-dating partners goes up, people tend to increasingly rely on heuristics in their decision making strategies.
Well, several experiments have shown that when shoppers are presented with either an extensive or limited amount of potential consumer choices (e.g.