Ph.D student & post-doc
Paris Descartes University
The influence of emotions on decision making in children, adolescents and adults : How do socio-emotional context and the development of counterfactual emotions influence our choices?
Supervised by Sylvain Moutier, Olivier Houdé & Mathieu Cassotti
The general goal of this thesis was to study (i) the influence of different socio-emotional contexts on decision-making under risk, in children, adolescents and adults and (ii) the developmental dynamics of the Types 1 (heuristic) and 2 (analytic) of reasoning within the framework of the Dual Process theories, and their articulation with the Prospect Theory. According to us, a better articulation between these two theories could account more efficiently of the influence of emotions on reward and punishment sensitivity in decision-making. Therefore, we first examined the influence of an incidental emotional context on the framing effect - a classical bias in decision-making - on adult participants. We started by studying the influence of the valence of the emotions (positive or negative) and then the influence of different specific emotions (anger and fear) on this bias. Our results revealed that the participants were no longer affected by the framing effect following an exposure to a positive emotional context, due to a decrease of risk aversion in the loss frame. The two negative emotions we considered had opposite effects on risk taking: fear tended to increase risk taking, whereas anger tended to decrease it. In a follow-up study, we investigated the influence of incidental positive emotions on the framing effect during adolescence, a critical period for risk taking. In adolescents, the framing effect was modulated by the amount of the outcome at stake, and the emotional context had different impact on this bias depending of the amount of the outcome considered. Then, we examined the development of two integral (and counterfactual) emotions, regret and relief, and how these emotions affect our willingness to reconsider a choice. We elaborated a new gambling task and we manipulated the outcome obtained by the participants to induce regret or relief. This study provided evidence that the ability to experience regret and relief and the ability to take them into consideration continue to develop during late childhood and adolescence. We finally studied the development of social regret and relief from late childhood to adulthood, using a situation of social competition (playing against a playmate). This socio-emotional context seems to bias the rational evaluation of regret and relief in adolescence, as some situations are evaluated as more desirable, as compared to the same situations in a context of individual game. These results are discussed in light of the Prospect theory, as reward and punishment sensitivity seems to be differently modulated by socio-emotional context, at each developmental stage.
Osmont, A., Camarda, A., Habib, M., & Cassotti, M. (2021). Peers' Choices Influence Adolescent Risk‐taking Especially When Explicit Risk Information is Lacking. Journal of research on adolescence, 31(2), 402-416. https://doi.org/10.1111/jora.12611
Camarda, A., Borst, G., Agogué, M., Habib, M., Weil, B., Houdé, O., Cassotti, M. (2018). Do we need inhibitory control to be creative? Evidence from a dual-task paradigm. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts, 12, 351-358
Habib, M., Borst, G., Poirel, N., Houdé, O., Moutier, S., Cassotti, M. (2015). Socio-emotional context and adolescents’ decision making: The experience of regret and relief after social comparison. Journal of Research on Adolescence, 25, 81-91.
Habib, M., Cassotti, M., Moutier, S., Houdé, O., Borst, G. (2015). Fear and anger have opposite effects on risk seeking in the gain frame. Frontiers in Psychology, 6, 253. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2015.00253
Cassotti, M., Habib, M., Poirel, N., Aïte, A., Houdé, O., Moutier, S. (2012). Positive emotional context eliminates the framing effect in decision-making. Emotion, 12, 926-931.
Habib, M. (2012) Influence des émotions sur la prise de décision chez l’enfant, l’adolescent et l’adulte : Comment le contexte socio-émotionnel et le développement des émotions contrefactuelles influencent-ils nos choix ? [Doctoral dissertation, Paris 5]
Habib, M., Cassotti, M., Borst, G., Simon, G., Pineau, A., Houdé, O., Moutier, S. (2012). Counterfactually mediated emotions: A developmental study of regret and relief in a probabilistic gambling task. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 112, 265-274.