[IEEE SMC 2014] Heuristic Decision Making with Incomplete Information: Conditions for Ecological Rationality

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Ecological rationality is the study of when certain decision making strategies exploit specific environments so efficiently that further information and computation would not necessarily increase accuracy. This perspective challenges many of the normative accounts of rationality by arguing that heuristics, i.e. decision making strategies that ignore some available information, in some environments can make decisions faster, more efficiently, and/or more accurately than analytic decision making strategies. This presentation introduces a new environmental structure, a measure of distribution of incomplete information called complete attribute pairs, and shows how this structure indicates when a well-studied heuristic decision making strateigy, Take-the-Best (TTB), is ecologically rational under conditions of incomplete information.

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