The definition of the situation and variable rationality : the model of frame selection as a general theory of action

Kroneberg, Clemens

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URN: urn:nbn:de:bsz:180-madoc-26025
Document Type: Working paper
Year of publication: 2006
The title of a journal, publication series: Rationalitätskonzepte, Entscheidungsverhalten und ökonomische Modellierung
Volume: 06-05
Place of publication: Mannheim
Publication language: English
Institution: School of Law and Economics > Sonstige - Fakultät für Rechtswissenschaft und Volkswirtschaftslehre
MADOC publication series: Sonderforschungsbereich 504 > Rationalitätskonzepte, Entscheidungsverhalten und ökonomische Modellierung (Laufzeit 1997 - 2008)
Subject: 300 Social sciences, sociology, anthropology
Subject headings (SWD): Mikroökonomie , Verhalten , Sozialpsychologie , Entscheidungstheorie , Theorie
Individual keywords (German): Framing
Abstract: Starting from the classical sociological notion of the definition of the situation and the idea of variable rationality, the article develops the Model of Frame Selection (MFS) as a general theory of action. This model explains how an actor defines a situation (frame selection), which program of action he activates (script selection) and which action he is willing to perform (action selection). The MFS assumes that each of these selections can be governed by one of two distinct modes of information processing: A reflecting-calculating mode in which an actor shows the forward-looking maximizing behavior assumed by rational choice theory, or an automatic-spontaneous mode in which he will select without any prior reflection a mentally strongly accessible alternative. Relying on insights gained in cognitive social psychology, the MFS also specifies the conditions under which one or the other mode prevails. How the MFS can be applied to explain behavior and guide the analysis of social mechanisms is demonstrated.

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