Ulrik Beierholm (Durham University), 12 Dec 2016, 4:30pm, NUBS 1.14


SpeakerUlrik Beierholm, Durham University

Title: The importance of opportunity costs for human vigour and 'micro-behaviour'

Date & Time:12 Dec 2016, (Monday), 4:30-5:45 pm

Venue:  Newcastle University Business School, 1.14

              5 Barrack Road, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 4SE



Human decision making at the level of conscious explicit choices has been extensively studied (stocks vs bonds, immediate vs delayed reward etc.). However most choices we make are implicit choices with little conscious reflection, as we go about our daily lives.

From a normative viewpoint, when modeling such choices the importance of incorporating opportunity costs (loss of potential gain from alternative choices) is becoming increasingly clear. An influential computational model has proposed a link between opportunity cost, vigour/motivation and neuro modulators such as dopamine. 

Based on a simple reaction time task in combination with behavioural, computational and pharmacological methods we find support for the role of opportunity cost in human vigour. These results constitute part of a growing body of evidence for the role of opportunity cost in implicit choices or 'micro-behaviour'.


Last modified: Wed, 30 Nov 2016 14:53:35 GMT