Strategies for improving self-control among naïve, sophisticated, and time-consistent consumers

Naomi Mandel, Maura L. Scott, Sunghoon Kim, Rajiv K. Sinha

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Important prior research has established measurement scales (e.g., Tangney, Baumeister, & Boone, 2004) to determine individual differences in self-control and to predict behavior. However, these measurement scales do not account for the lack of awareness that many people have regarding their own self-control abilities. In the current research, the authors develop a new classification method based on O'Donoghue and Rabin's (1999a) theory of time-consistent, naïve, and sophisticated individuals, and they show that this method predicts future preferences and behavior. In addition, the authors test two alternative strategies for improving self-control: precommitment (Ariely & Wertenbroch, 2002) and outcome elaboration (Nenkov, Inman, & Hulland, 2008), and they demonstrate how these strategies differentially affect these three categories of consumers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Economic Psychology
StateAccepted/In press - Aug 30 2016


  • Delay of gratification
  • Goal setting
  • Intertemporal choice
  • Self-control

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Economics and Econometrics


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