Discounting the freedom to choose: Implications for the paradox of choice

Derek D. Reed, Brent A. Kaplan, Adam T. Brewer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Organisms prefer to make their own choices. However, emerging research from behavioral decision making sciences has demonstrated that there are boundaries to the preference for choice. Specifically, many decision makers find an extensive array of choice options to be aversive, often leading to negative emotional states and poor behavioral outcomes. This study examined the degree to which human participants discounted hypothetical rewards that were (a) delayed, (b) probabilistic, and (c) chosen from a large array of options. The present results suggest that the "paradox of choice" effect may be explained within a discounting model for individual patterns of decision making.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)424-427
Number of pages4
JournalBehavioural Processes
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 2012


  • Choice
  • Choice overload
  • Discounting
  • Paradox of choice
  • Search costs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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