Framing as a Mechanism for Self-Control Chapter uri icon


  • This chapter approaches self-control via a problem arising in decision theoretic discussions of sequential choice within a broadly Humean conception of action and motivation. How can agents stick to their plans and honor their commitments in the face of temptation, if at the moment of choice the short-term temptation motivationally outweighs the long-term goal? After introducing the sequential choice puzzle in section 19.1, section 19.2 surveys suggestive psychological work on the mechanisms of self-control, pointing to the importance of how outcomes are framed. Section 19.3 offers a solution to the sequential choice problem in terms of frame-sensitive reasoningi.e. reasoning that allows outcomes to be valued differently depending on how they are framed, even when the agent knows that she is dealing with two (or more) different ways of framing the same outcome. Section 19.4 argues that this type of quasi-cyclical, frame-sensitive reasoning can indeed be rational.

author list (cited authors)

  • Bermdez, J. L.

citation count

  • 0

complete list of authors

  • Bermúdez, José Luis

Book Title

  • Surrounding Self-Control

publication date

  • June 2020