Date of Award

1-1-2010

Document Type

Campus Access Dissertation

Department

Moore School of Business

Sub-Department

Business Administration

First Advisor

Rose Randall

Abstract

The discrepancy between the buyer and seller evaluation, referred to as the endowment effect, has been investigated and replicated across various domains because of its implications for rational decision-making. The endowment effect has been explained as a manifestation of loss aversion from the reference point of ownership.

Though prior research has examined various cognitive and affective processes underlying the endowment effect, some fundamental questions remain unanswered. These questions pertain to the intriguing nature of the endowment effect and the nature of the construct used to explain the phenomenon - loss aversion. In an attempt to answer these questions, this research proposes a model based on implicit processes. The model argues that selling is perceived as an implicit self-threat and sellers as a part of their automatic defense mechanism respond to this self-threat by enhancing the value of the self-associated object. Three studies test the above hypothesis and provide support to the proposed model.

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