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A micro-level simulation for the prediction of intention and behavior

Richetin, Juliette, Sengupta, Abhijit, Perugini, Marco, Adjali, Iqbal, Hurling, Robert, Greetham, Danica and Spence, Michael (2009) A micro-level simulation for the prediction of intention and behavior Cognitive Systems Research, 11 (2). pp. 181-193.

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In this contribution we aim at anchoring Agent-Based Modeling (ABM) simulations in actual models of human psychology. More specifically, we apply unidirectional ABM to social psychological models using low level agents (i.e., intra-individual) to examine whether they generate better predictions, in comparison to standard statistical approaches, concerning the intentions of performing a behavior and the behavior. Moreover, this contribution tests to what extent the predictive validity of models of attitude such as the Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB) or Model of Goal-directed Behavior (MGB) depends on the assumption that peoples’ decisions and actions are purely rational. Simulations were therefore run by considering different deviations from rationality of the agents with a trembling hand method. Two data sets concerning respectively the consumption of soft drinks and physical activity were used. Three key findings emerged from the simulations. First, compared to standard statistical approach the agent-based simulation generally improves the prediction of behavior from intention. Second, the improvement in prediction is inversely proportional to the complexity of the underlying theoretical model. Finally, the introduction of varying degrees of deviation from rationality in agents’ behavior can lead to an improvement in the goodness of fit of the simulations. By demonstrating the potential of ABM as a complementary perspective to evaluating social psychological models, this contribution underlines the necessity of better defining agents in terms of psychological processes before examining higher levels such as the interactions between individuals.

Item Type: Article
Divisions : Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences > Surrey Business School
Authors :
Richetin, Juliette
Perugini, Marco
Adjali, Iqbal
Hurling, Robert
Greetham, Danica
Spence, Michael
Date : 18 August 2009
DOI : 10.1016/j.cogsys.2009.08.001
Copyright Disclaimer : Copyright © 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Additional Information : Embargo OK Metadata OK No Further Action
Depositing User : James Marshall
Date Deposited : 19 Aug 2020 14:24
Last Modified : 19 Aug 2020 14:24

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