like a monkey driving a car
March 30th, 2005

This article in Businessweek says that “the study of neuroeconomics may topple the notion of rational decision-making.According to the new science of neuroeconomics, the explanation might lie inside the brains of the negotiators. Not in the prefrontal cortex,where people rationally weigh pros and cons, but deep inside,where powerful emotions arise.Brain scans show that when people feel they’re being treated unfairly,a small area called the anterior insula lights up, engendering the same disgust that people get from, say, smelling a skunk. That overwhelms the deliberations of the prefrontal cortex. With primitive brain functions so powerful,it’s no wonder that economic transactions often go awry. “In some ways, modern economic life for humans is like a monkey driving a car,” says Colin F. Camerer,an economist at California Institute of Technology”.
Why Logic Often Takes A Backseat

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