Want/Should Conflicts


For over a decade, I have studied how people deal with conflict between what they want to do versus what they think that they should do.  Recently, I have worked with Katy Milkman, Todd Rogers, and others on how people make inconsistent decisions based on this internal conflict.  The following are representative publications:

Tenbrunsel, A.E., Diekmann, K.A., Wade-Benzoni, K.A., & Bazerman, M.H. Why We Aren’t as Ethical as We Think We Are: A Temporal Explanation. In B.M. Staw and A. Brief (Eds.), Research in Organizational Behavior, , 2010, 30, 153–173.

Milkman, K.L., Rogers, T. & Bazerman, M.H.  I'll Have the Ice Cream Soon and the Vegetables Later: A Study of Online Grocery Purchases and Order Lead Time.  Marketing Letters, 2010, 21(1), 17-35.

Milkman, K.L., Chugh, D. & Bazerman, M.H. How Can Decision Making Be Improved? Perspectives on Psychological Science, 2009, 4(4), 379-383.

Milkman, K.L., T. Rogers and M.H. Bazerman. Highbrow films gather dust: Time-inconsistent preferences and online DVD rentals. Management Science, 2009, 55(6), 1047-1059.

Milkman, K.L., Rogers, T., & Bazerman, M.H. Harnessing Our Inner Angels and Demons: What We Have Learned About Want/Should Conflicts and How That Knowledge Can Help Us Reduce Short-Sighted Decision Making.  Perspectives on Psychological Science, 2008, 3(4), 324-338.

Rogers, T. & Bazerman, M.H. Future Lock-in: Future Implementation Increases Selection of ‘Should’ Choices. Organizational Behavioral and Human Decision Processes, 2008, 106(1), 1-20.

O’Connor, K.M., deDreu, C.K.W., Schroth, H., Barry, B., Lituchy, T., & Bazerman, M.H.  What We Want to Do Versus What We Think We Should Do.  Journal of Behavioral Decision Making, 2002, 15, 403-418.

Bazerman, M.H., Tenbrunsel, A.E. & Wade-Benzoni, K.A. Negotiating with Yourself and Losing: Understanding and Managing Conflicting Internal Preferences, Academy of Management Review, 1998, 23, 225-241.


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