Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Generous paupers and stingy princes? Power and consumer spending

19.10.2010
How do people decide how much to spend on purchases for themselves versus others? A new study in the Journal of Consumer Research says it all depends on how powerful we feel at the moment of choice.

"We ask whether the powerful and powerless differentially value the self versus others, and whether this, in turn, translates into observable differences in their spending behavior," write authors Derek D. Rucker, David Dubois, and Adam D. Galinsky (Kellogg School at Northwestern University).

The authors conducted five experiments where they manipulated participants' states of power and then examined how much they spent on purchases for themselves or others. Power was manipulated by assigning people to the role of a boss or employee in a task, having participants recall a past time when they possessed or lacked power, or exposing them to advertisements designed to make them feel powerful or powerless.

After completing these power-related tasks, participants took place in an auction where they bid for a t-shirt and a mug. One group of participants was told to bid on the product for themselves, whereas the members of the other group were told to bid on the product to get it for a person of their choosing. "When participants were bidding to obtain the product for themselves, those who completed the high-power recall task bid $12.08 on average, whereas those who completed the low-power recall task only bid $6.49, an astonishing difference of more than 46 percent," the authors write. In fact, the opposite occurred when the participants were asked to bid on the product for someone else. The low-power people bid $10.81 on average, while the high-power participants bid $7.10.

This same pattern of results emerged across five experiments. "When participants were asked to make a purchase for themselves, the amount of money spent was consistently greater for participants assigned to the high-power condition relative to participants assigned to the low-power condition," the authors write.

Although the high-power participants spent more money on themselves, they were happier when they spent money on others, the authors found.

Derek D. Rucker, David Dubois, and Adam D. Galinsky. "Generous Paupers and Stingy Princes: Power Drives Consumer Spending on Self versus Others." Journal of Consumer Research. Contact JCR@bus.wisc.edu for a copy of the study. See http://ejcr.org for additional information.

Author video: http://bit.ly/cHlFxz

Mary-Ann Twist | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.wisc.edu

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht New study: How does Europe become a leading player for software and IT services?
03.04.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für System- und Innovationsforschung (ISI)

nachricht Reusable carbon nanotubes could be the water filter of the future, says RIT study
30.03.2017 | Rochester Institute of Technology

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

Im Focus: Quantum-physical Model System

Computer-assisted methods aid Heidelberg physicists in reproducing experiment with ultracold atoms

Two researchers at Heidelberg University have developed a model system that enables a better understanding of the processes in a quantum-physical experiment...

Im Focus: Glacier bacteria’s contribution to carbon cycling

Glaciers might seem rather inhospitable environments. However, they are home to a diverse and vibrant microbial community. It’s becoming increasingly clear that they play a bigger role in the carbon cycle than previously thought.

A new study, now published in the journal Nature Geoscience, shows how microbial communities in melting glaciers contribute to the Earth’s carbon cycle, a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

7th International Conference on Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics in Freiburg on April 3-5, 2017

03.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

New quantum liquid crystals may play role in future of computers

21.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

A promising target for kidney fibrosis

21.04.2017 | Health and Medicine

Light rays from a supernova bent by the curvature of space-time around a galaxy

21.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>