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If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart by Albert Costa

06/26/2015

If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart by Albert Costa

We are constantly making decisions of many different sorts. From more mundane decisions such as which clothes to wear every morning or where to go for lunch, to more relevant ones, such as whether we can afford the price of a nice holiday on a Pacific island, or whether an investment plan is too risky; decision making is an everyday life activity. It is well known that our decisions often depart from a purely rational cost benefit economical analysis, and that indeed they are biased by several factors that prompt intuitive responses that often drive the decision made. In this talk, I will describe several studies in which there is a pervasive effect of the language in which problems are presented on decision-making. These studies cover economic, moral and intellectual decisions. Together the evidence suggests that a reduction in the emotional resonance prompted by the problem leads to a reduction in the impact of intuitive processes on decision-making. This evidence not only helps to understand the forces driving decision-making, but it also has important implications for a world in which people are commonly faced with problems in a foreign language.

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06/26/2015
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