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The Economics of Cognitive Negligence

Year 2023, Volume: 16 Issue: 1, 1 - 12, 30.06.2023
https://doi.org/10.37093/ijsi.1262353

Abstract

The essence of the decision-making mechanism of rational individuals in economics is to ensure the balance between benefits and costs. The benefit received from a decision is expected to be higher than its cost. It is so in cognitive activities. Any cognitive practice may require effort, expenses, and time-use to some extent. However, the actors do not always do all they can. A significant reason for not using cognitive abilities adequately in verbal, written, and visual information production is the individuals’ not wholly bearing the negative consequences of their cognitive actions. Such a cognitive attitude differs from similar notions of rational ignorance, rational inattention, and mental laziness. This paper introduces a new concept, cognitive negligence, that refers to the tendency of individuals to avoid the cost and maximize benefits in cognitive activities by making an implicit or explicit cost-benefit analysis. The paper presents why and how cognitive negligence emerges. It defines the factors affecting it, such as the position of the actor, perception of importance, context or type of activity, time of action, social distance, and the diversity of the audience. Its relationship with lying, distortion, and critical thinking is discussed. Finally, the consequences of cognitive negligence are evaluated.

References

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  • Downs, A. (1957). An economic theory of political action in a democracy. Journal of Political Economy, 65(2), 135–150. https://doi.org/10.1086/257897
  • Hertwig, R., & Engel, C. (2016). Homo ignorans: Deliberately choosing not to know. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 11(3), 359–372. https://doi.org/10.1177/1745691616635594
  • Karau, S. J., & Williams, K. D. (1993). Social loafing: A meta-analytic review and theoretical integration. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 65(4), 681–706. https://doi.org/10.1037/0022-3514.65.4.681
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  • Martinelli, C. (2007). Rational ignorance and voting behavior. International Journal of Game Theory, 35(3), 315–335. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00182-006-0051-4
  • Sims, C. A. (2003). Implications of rational inattention. Journal of Monetary Economics, 50(3), 665–690. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0304-3932(03)00029-1
  • Sternberg, R. J., & Sternberg, K. (2016). Cognitive psychology. Nelson Education.
  • Wiederholt, M. (2010). Rational inattention. The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics (Online Ed.).

Year 2023, Volume: 16 Issue: 1, 1 - 12, 30.06.2023
https://doi.org/10.37093/ijsi.1262353

Abstract

References

  • Birkelund, G. E. (2016). Rational laziness—When time Is limited, supply abundant, and decisions have to be made. Analyse & Kritik, 38(1), 203–226. https://doi.org/10.1515/auk-2016-0110
  • Cambridge Dictionary. (2020). Negligence. In Cambridge Dictionary. https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/negligence
  • Demir, Ö. (2009). Siyasete yön veren rasyonel cahil seçmenler [Rational ignorant voters which give direction to politics]. Hukuk ve İktisat Araştırmaları Dergisi, 1(1), 1–10. https://dergipark.org.tr/tr/pub/hiad/issue/7647/100128
  • Downs, A. (1957). An economic theory of political action in a democracy. Journal of Political Economy, 65(2), 135–150. https://doi.org/10.1086/257897
  • Hertwig, R., & Engel, C. (2016). Homo ignorans: Deliberately choosing not to know. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 11(3), 359–372. https://doi.org/10.1177/1745691616635594
  • Karau, S. J., & Williams, K. D. (1993). Social loafing: A meta-analytic review and theoretical integration. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 65(4), 681–706. https://doi.org/10.1037/0022-3514.65.4.681
  • Kuran, T. (1997). Private truths, public lies: The social consequences of preference falsification. Harvard University Press.
  • Martinelli, C. (2007). Rational ignorance and voting behavior. International Journal of Game Theory, 35(3), 315–335. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00182-006-0051-4
  • Sims, C. A. (2003). Implications of rational inattention. Journal of Monetary Economics, 50(3), 665–690. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0304-3932(03)00029-1
  • Sternberg, R. J., & Sternberg, K. (2016). Cognitive psychology. Nelson Education.
  • Wiederholt, M. (2010). Rational inattention. The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics (Online Ed.).

Details

Primary Language English
Subjects Behavioural Economy
Journal Section Articles
Authors

Ömer DEMİR
SOCIAL SCIENCES UNIVERSITY OF ANKARA, FACULTY OF POLITICAL SCIENCES, DEPARTMENT OF ECONOMICS
0000-0001-8684-1932
Türkiye


Cem EYERCİ
Türkiye Cumhuriyet Merkez Bankası
0000-0002-9863-5957
Türkiye

Publication Date June 30, 2023
Submission Date March 9, 2023
Published in Issue Year 2023 Volume: 16 Issue: 1

Cite

APA
DEMİR, Ö., & EYERCİ, C. (2023). The Economics of Cognitive Negligence. International Journal of Social Inquiry, 16(1), 1-12. https://doi.org/10.37093/ijsi.1262353

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