DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2017.00486

Advances in Psychological Science (心理科学进展) 2017/25:3 PP.486-499

Risk-sensitivity theory: Need motivates risky decision-making

Risk-sensitivity theory, which is based on experimental examination of the foraging behavior of animals, proposes that decision makers shift from risk aversion to risk preference in situations of need. As a biological theory of decision making, predications based on risk sensitivity theory has been supported by both animal studies and studies involve human participants. Existing evidence suggests that risk-sensitivity theory can account for various patterns of decision-making in a wide range of domains. It's necessary to provide a systematic review of risk-sensitivity theory, including its theoretical speculation, main arguments, and development of mathematical models. Distinctions among risk sensitivity theory and other well-established theories were also speculated in consideration of the reference point. Risk-sensitivity theory contributes to the literature as it provides additional explanations for shifts in individuals' risk taking tendencies under a wide range of situational factors, including changes in economic inequality and power.

Key words:Risk-sensitivity theory,need,reference point,economic inequality,power

ReleaseDate:2017-04-10 17:44:42

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