What is Ethical Decision Making

Ethical Decision making

In everyday life, decisions are made all the time: in some cases these are automatic, while in other cases decision-making can be a longer, more demanding and complex process;

For this reason, decision making is characterized by some of the most important events in life.

Decision Making Process: The Decision Making Process and the Factors That Condition it – Psychology
In daily life, decisions are made all the time.

In some cases, decisions are automated, while in other cases decision making can be a longer, more challenging and complicated process.

Decision making – to delve deeper into the topic:

Decision making is characterized by some of the most important events in life: for example, choosing who to marry, which house to buy, which job to invest in, whether to quit smoking.

Are decisions that have to be made based on various factors. should be taken into account and evaluated. the basis of the future tense.

On the other hand, if choosing which pizza to have for an evening out with friends, whether to avoid danger or not, drinking another glass before heading out on the street requires that the decision-making process be quick and effective.

Judgment by an individual involves voluntary and deliberate behavior that follows logic. Decision making is usually done to solve a problem.

From a psychological point of view, however, there is a definite difference between fixing and solving a problem. In problem solving our decision-making function

Is always tied to the goal we want to achieve, whereas in decision-making the decision-making function is represented by the logic of choosing the most appropriate option within a series of alternatives.

So in formal terms, the decision-making process can be thought of as the result of mental processes (cognitive and emotional), which determine the selection of a line of action among various alternatives.

Each decision-making generates a final choice.

Decision-making usually requires evaluating at least two alternatives that differ with respect to various characteristics and elements.

Selecting one option at the expense of another requires the individual to apply a holistic assessment of the various alternatives, using specific methods of research and strategies for processing information and making decisions.

In most cases, decision-making means thinking in a situation of uncertainty: we cannot predict with certainty the future outcome of the possible alternatives available, but we can only predict the probability of such outcomes.

Researchers in psychology and economics generally agree on the importance of two fundamental human motivations, namely the desire to reduce uncertainty and the desire to profit (Bentham, 1948)

These reasons are fundamental in decision making. In contrast to earlier theories that linked rational choice to decision-making, it is known today that human decisions are based on rational and emotional motivations.

Decision making is studied by a variety of disciplines, from statistics to psychology to economics.

The applied impact of these studies is very important as the decision making process is transverse in various and many contexts.

For example, decisions in medical, politico-economic, legal and magisterial, organizational and corporate sectors in various emergency contexts. type, and so on.

Decision making principles and models

Therefore decision making is closely related to probabilistic reasoning. By “probabilistic reasoning” we mean inductive inference which allows us to estimate the probability that an event can occur within certain conditions.

With regard to theoretical models within the psychology of decision-making, two approaches differ: the normative approach and the descriptive approach.

The regulatory approach focuses on the principle of rational choice. According to this theory, in situations of uncertainty and risk, individuals represent choices of choice in terms of expected utility.

In other words, every possible alternative corresponds to a potentially attainable state of the world, which is associated with an associated probability value that can actually be realized.

According to von Neumann and Morgenstern (1944), people who make a choice rationally evaluate the utility of their choice and the likelihood that it will be.

According to normative theories and rational choice, man thinks in probabilistic and expected periods of usefulness and applies the rules of statistics in a precise way.

However, some authors already began to point out in the 1950s that people’s actual choice behavior presented differences in relation to the theoretical model of rational choice.

For example, according to Simon (1956), man cannot reason in an absolutely rational and formal way, because the mental functions dedicated to the.

Collection and processing of information

Have internal limitations and specificities (e.g., limited short-term memory, selective attention, etc.).

And external to the context in which the decision is made (quantity and quality of information, time limits, stressful situations, etc.).

Faced with these limitations, the model of bounded rationality predicts that we are content with an efficiency that is not optimal but satisfactory.

The gap between limited rationality and Olympic rationality (predicted by normative theories) is not a boundary but an adaptation that enables us to face through limited cognitive means, choices and otherwise overly complex tasks.

In this sense, the path opens up to a descriptive approach in the context of decision models. Along the same lines, the studies of Kahneman and Tversky (1974; 1981).

Found that people do not think correctly in statistical and rational terms, but rather use the so-called heuristic strategies.

In particular, Kahneman and Tversky studied decision-making processes in conditions of uncertainty and risk; their experiments have shown.

That during decision-making processes under conditions of uncertainty and risk, there are often systemic errors and cognitive biases that violate the assumptions of rational choice theory. the causes.

Several categories of decision-making strategies have been identified in the literature.

The first category of “compensation”

Strategies includes, for example, the model of advantages and disadvantages, according to which the individual evaluates.

The positive and negative attributes of the two alternatives, and the model of differences, according to which the individual evaluates the difference between ‘one and the other option.

As mentioned earlier, Kahneman and Tversky focused on the study of decision-making strategies implemented in risky situations.

Under these conditions, choices are highly conditioned by the way in which individuals perceive, represent, and process the information that comes into play in the selection process.

The perception of risk is a very complex phenomenon and when people have to assess risks, they often do not have complete information, they cannot use statistical data or other objective information.

They can only use information or knowledge derived from their experience.

Although heuristics are very effective, they involve extensive and systematic misrepresentations in decision making.

Heuristics are cognitive shortcuts that simplify the complexity of estimating the probability of an event and allow you to make a decision more quickly.

Kahneman and Tversky believe that an ordinary person makes mistakes in reasoning because he relies on a limited number of heuristic principles.

Which have the advantage, however, of reducing the complexity in estimating probability and predicting values to simpler judicial operations.

The probability estimates of an event are made by people based on a heuristic that, although practical and quick, do not always guarantee reasonable estimates.

There are several types of heuristics. According to the availability heuristic, people estimate the probabilities of an event judging by the ease with which they can remember the cases in which it occurred.

According to representative heuristics, on the other hand, the probability of an event is estimated as a function of the degree of similarity with the essential features of the population to which it belongs.

To the heuristic of anchor and adaptation, a natural starting point or reference is used as the first approximation for the assessment in the probabilistic assessment, i.e. “anchor”.

This “anchor” is then adapted to modulate the effects of gathering additional information. Usually the configuration is approximate and inaccurate.

The somatic marker hypothesis

Finally, another phenomenon of decision-making in contexts of uncertainty and risk is so-called framing, i.e. the way individuals present decision problems.

Indeed, the risky choices will depend on the nature of the framework given by the description of the choices. The frame or framing effect consists of a mental representation.

Of the consequences of the alternatives so that those consequences can be viewed as gains or losses relative to a reference point.

The assumption of a risk perspective seems to be due to the subjective risk appetite that the alternatives are formulated differently, so that the formulation leads to a change of the reference point.

The social context can be an influential factor in the decision-making process, as individuals must constantly make decisions while being immersed in a social context.

Inevitably, social pressure and culture can influence decisive behavior, especially in social and organizational contexts.

Group membership can influence the behavior and decisions of individuals to such an extent that we are talking about conformity in groups in social psychology.

The individual is pushed to adapt to group decisions, even if they differ in the way they think and act.

Another factor that influences the decision-making process is emotional stress. For example, one reason for stress is a lack of time to make a decision.

According to the theory of Janis and Mann (1977), individuals adopt different behaviors depending on the level of stress to which they are exposed.

For example, during severe stress, the person may carry out defensive avoidance, which consists of abandoning the decision-making process by postponing it to a later date, or he may adopt hypervigilant attitudes and behaviors.

Regarding the decision-making:

The somatic sign alerts you to the negative result that a given choice may lead to, and acts as an automatic alert “warning” you to beware of the danger that awaits you by choosing the option that leads too much to this result.

The signal can immediately give up the negative behavior and thus lead to a choice between alternatives, which excludes them.

Protects against future losses and thus allows you to choose from a smaller number of alternatives. Cost-benefit analysis and corresponding deductive proficiency are possible.

But only when the automated step has drastically reduced the number of options available.

In the normal human decision-making process, somatic signs may not be enough because in many cases a final thought and decision-making process takes place.

Markers are likely to make the decision-making process more efficient and accurate. (Damasio, 1994).

In short, somatic signs are specific examples of feelings generated by secondary emotions. Those emotions and feelings associated with the expected future outcomes of certain scenarios through learning.

If a negative somatic marker is contrasted with a certain future outcome, the combination acts as an alarm bell, if instead a positive marker intervenes it becomes an incentive signal: this is the core of the hypothesis.

Addition, somatic markers can operate covertly and use a “quasi” ring. They do not advise for us, but support a decision by highlighting some possibilities and excluding others (Damasio, 1994).

Summary, it can be said that the somatic marker is anchored in decision making on the emotional side of the person.

Emotions are therefore an important factor in the interaction between environmental conditions and decision-making processes

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