Essays on Making Interdependent Decisions and Their Evaluations
Oza, Shweta S
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This dissertation comprises of two essays that investigate factors influencing interdependent decision-making and the evaluations of such decision outcomes. In the first essay, we examine the influence of time taken by a bargaining opponent to respond to an offer on bargainers' perceptions of their own bargaining outcomes. Extending previous research in several important ways, we propose and test a conceptualization where inferences of opponent's reservation price lie at the core of the underlying explanation. Second, we provide additional insight into the underlying process by showing that delay influences perceptions of bargaining outcomes only when it is related to the bargaining. Third, unlike previous work that examined the effect of delay when an offer was accepted, we extend the inquiry to situations where an offer is rejected. Fourth, we identify and test two factors - knowledge of opponent's best alternative to negotiated agreement and persuasion knowledge - that moderate the influence of response time on perceptions of bargaining outcomes. Results of five studies provide insight into the underlying process by identifying and testing boundary conditions for the effect of delay. In the second essay, we focus on generic campaigns that are funded voluntarily (rather than mandatory contributions), and examine the influence of situational factors (e.g., market trends) and solicitation appeals on voluntary contributions to a generic campaign. Viewing generic advertising campaigns as a public goods problem, a conceptual framework based on goal systems theory is developed to suggest that situational factors such as market trends induce different goals, which in turn, influence voluntary contributions. The conceptual framework also suggests that a solicitation appeal that is more congruent with the induced goal is likely to be more effective in increasing voluntary contributions relative to incongruent appeals. Consistent with the framework, three studies show that voluntary contributions to generic campaigns are higher when the market trend is declining versus increasing. Further, solicitations that make the induced goal and the means to achieve that goal salient are more effective in increasing contributions. The implications of the findings are discussed along with directions for future research.