Take Action

Home | Faculty & Research Overview | Research

Research Details

Asymmetric Option Effects on Ease of Choice Criticism and Defense, Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes


Individuals often criticize others choices and seek to defend their own. In theory, the ease of criticizing a particular choice should correspond to the ease of defending it. However, we demonstrate that differences in the types of arguments put forth in choice criticism and defense result in a systematic discrepancy in the ease with which these tasks are performed. Specifically, criticism arguments tend to be based on norms or conventions, and defense arguments on idiosyncratic tastes or circumstances; accordingly, whether the chosen option is perceived as un/conventional significantly affects ease of choice criticism but has little or no impact on ease of choice defense. Furthermore, assessing the ease of choice defense increases the choice share of unconventional options, whereas judging the ease of choice criticism has only a small impact on choice. We discuss the implications of our findings with respect to research on reason-based choice in socially-intensive environments.




Thomas Kramer, Michal Maimaran, Itamar Simonson

Date Published



Kramer, Thomas, Michal Maimaran, and Itamar Simonson. 2012. Asymmetric Option Effects on Ease of Choice Criticism and Defense. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes.(1): 179-191.


Explore leading research and ideas

Find articles, podcast episodes, and videos that spark ideas in lifelong learners, and inspire those looking to advance in their careers.
learn more


Review Courses & Schedules

Access information about specific courses and their schedules by viewing the interactive course scheduler tool.


Discover the path to your goals

Whether you choose our Full-Time, Part-Time or Executive MBA program, you’ll enjoy the same unparalleled education, exceptional faculty and distinctive culture.
learn more