Examining Decision-Making in Couples Using Attachment Theory and Game Theory: An Experimental Approach
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This study’s purpose was to examine relational decision-making by using attachment theory to predict a couple’s behavior in a coordination game. Previous research with strangers has shown that failure to coordinate is common, but by re-matching players, coordination can increase. Prior to playing together in a coordination game, 30 Franklin & Marshall College couples filled out several measures of attachment, trust, and communal orientation. It was expected that these variables examined within the dyad would predict the outcome observed for each couple, and examined across individuals, would predict the strategy chosen by each individual. While couples coordinated significantly more often than strangers in previous studies, no effects for the individual difference variables were found. Confounds of sample size and methodology are addressed. The findings suggest that even though meticulous care must be taken to successfully blend psychological insights with economic methodology, both disciplines can discover more together than apart.
Franklin and Marshall College Archives, Undergraduate Honors Thesis 2009
- F&M Theses Collection