ISSN 1671-3710
CN 11-4766/R

Advances in Psychological Science ›› 2013, Vol. 21 ›› Issue (2): 317-325.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2013.00317

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Reference Dependence Based on Prospect Theory

LI Haijun;XU Fuming;XIANG Peng;KONG Shixiao;MENG Zhenzhen   

  1. (Key Laboratory of Adolescent Cyberpsychology and Behavior (CCNU), Ministry of Education; School of Psychology, Central China Normal University; Key Laboratory of Human Development and Mental Health of Hubei Province, Wuhan 430079, China)
  • Received:2012-05-29 Online:2013-02-15 Published:2013-02-15
  • Contact: XU Fuming

Abstract: Reference dependency refers to that decision makers evaluations for the value of outcome are based upon certain reference point. That is, if the decision maker perceives his current wealth to be higher than the reference point, he feels a gain; conversely, if his current wealth falls short of his reference point, he suffers a loss. Reference dependency exists in almost all fields of everyday life. This paper introduces three psychological mechanisms of reference dependency, namely, prospect theory, regret theory and tri-reference-point theory. Then, we introduce influential factors of the reference dependency in terms of experience, emotional state, culture, goal and cognitive object characteristic. Future researches of reference dependency are expected to concern its origin and neural mechanism, and explore deeply dynamic reference point, multiple reference point and reference dependency in group.

Key words: reference dependence, prospect theory, regret theory, culture, goal