Decision research has only recently started to take seriously the role of emotions in choices and decisions. Regret is the emotion that has received the most attention. In this article, we sample a number of the initial regret studies from psychology and economics, and trace some of the complexities and contradictions to which they led. We then sketch a new theory, decision justification theory (DJT), which synthesizes several apparently conflicting findings. DJT postulates two core components of decision¿related regret, one associated with the (comparative) evaluation of the outcome, the other with the feeling of self¿blame for having made a poor choice. We reinterpret several existing studies in DJT terms. We then report some new studies that directly tested (and support) DJT, and propose a number of research issues that follow from this new approach to regret.
|Journal||Current Directions in Psychological Science|
|Publication status||Published - 2002|