Analyse & Kritik

Journal of Philosophy and Social Theory


"Catherine S. Herfeld"

Titel: The Motive of Commitment and Its Implications for Rational Choice Theory
Autor: Catherine S. Herfeld
Seite: 291-317

Abstract: This paper addresses the explanatory role of the concept of a motive for action in economics. The aim of the paper is to show the difficulty economists have to accommodate the motive of commitment into their explanatory and predictive framework, i.e. rational choice theory. One difficulty is that the economists’ explanation becomes analytic when assuming preferences of commitment. Another difficulty is that it is highly doubtful whether commitment can be represented by current frameworks while (pre-)serving the ’folk-psychological’ idea of what is commonly understood by the idea of a commitment. Both difficulties lead to the conclusion that, although motives do matter, conceptualizing the motive of commitment would cause trouble for rational choice theory.

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