Escalating the Commitment

Escalation of commitment is the tendency to invest additional resources in an apparently losing investment, influenced by effort, money and time already invested. If the costs outweigh the benefits, the extra costs incurred are held in a different mental account than the one associated with the first investment. To visualize this fallacy let us use…

NEUROLAW NOVEMBER IV – Neuroscience and Memories

This is the final article in the Neurolaw November series. If you have not yet done so, I highly recommend that you read the Introduction to Neurolaws written by my colleague Maureen Jacob, as well as the other parts in the series. As described well in her article, the foundation of Neurolaws is a simple…

NEUROLAW NOVEMBER III – The Social Brain

At the beginning, millions of years ago, bacteria were swallowing mitochondria. This small neighbor was not digested, however. Instead, the bacterium eventually evolved to live in a symbiotic relationship with its mitochondrial counterpart. The bacterium managed life, locomotion, food intake and more, while the mitochondria ensured that there was always plenty of energy available. This…

NEUROLAW NOVEMBER II – The Opposite of Truth

Imagine a world in which nobody is lying. A world in which no one has ever lied and will never lie. Which problems would emerge? How would life change? There would indeed be fundamental changes. Let us consider an example often used in criminal law classes: A husband whose wife falls in love with another…

NEUROLAW NOVEMBER I – Introduction into Neurolaws

This is the second part of our Neurolaw reading series. You can find the first part HERE. Humans are first and foremost animals – even though we tend to deny that. Animals with morality, guided by the norms of their group and their feelings. We follow the guiding principles of our society which, for example,…

Announcement: Neurolaw November

During the last months you embarked on a journey through the depths of psychology influencing the legal sector. You realized the huge influence the anchoring effect has on negotiations. Judges tend to follow inferences drawn from previous cases and for a defendant, the time of the day has greater influence on the judgement he receives…

All you need to know on the Endowment Effect

We recently mentioned in our Rational Roundup the Nobel Prize won by Prof. Richard Thaler. One of Richard Thaler’s key contributions to behavioral economics – and a reason for an increasing awareness of the latter as a field of research from the early 1980s onwards – is his work on what he labeled the endowment…