Jointly organized by Institute on Asian Consumer Insight (ACI) and Marketing & International Business (MIB) Division

"Choice and Quantity in Food-Related Self-Control: Theory and Evidence from Lab and Field"

Consumer psychologists often make inferences about a consumer’s self-control based on their observed choices of vice versus virtue foods. Such inferences may be misleading because they ignore actual consumption that only occurs post-choice. In this talk, I present two projects that demonstrate the theoretical and practical value of jointly studying choice and consumption quantity.

The first project extends the prototypical consumer psychological self-control paradigm of choice between a virtue and a vice. Using an endogenous treatment regression model, we simultaneously model both choice and intake quantity. Results of three studies show that self-control implications from choice are systematically different from those based on quantity consumed. Evidently, the popular practice of inferring self-control from choice alone may well be misleading.

The second project investigates an important practical consequence of this divergence between choice and quantity. Obesity rates are increasing worldwide, and policymakers have advocated for the introduction of choice architecture interventions (e.g., assortment organization, traffic-light labeling) that “nudge” consumers to eat healthier. However, relatively little is known about how consumers respond to such interventions, especially in situations where they intend to indulge. In two long-running field experiments at an ice-cream store, we find that displaying virtue flavors to customers’ left reduces calorie and saturated fat intake, especially when these flavors feature green labels. The reduction of intake is caused by increased choice likelihood as well as reduced quantity. The joint estimation of choice and quantity effects on intake is new to the emerging literature on choice architecture.


24 January 2018, Wednesday

2:30p.m. – 4:00p.m

Executive Seminar Room 5
Block S3.1, B1-07, Nanyang Avenue
Nanyang Technological University
Singapore 639798

About the Speaker:
Anirban Mukhopadhyay is Professor of Marketing and Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies at the School of Business and Management, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. His research examines the interplay between consumers’ lay beliefs, emotions, and self-regulatory decisions, and has been published in leading journals in Marketing, Psychology, Corporate Strategy, Economics, and Nutrition. His current substantive interests include food-related decision making, field experimentation with policy implications, and the interplay of consumption and subjective wellbeing. Anirban is currently Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Consumer Psychology, and has served as Co-Editor and Area Editor of the Journal of Consumer Psychology, Associate Editor at the Journal of Marketing Research, and on the editorial review boards of the Journal of Consumer Research and the International Journal of Research in Marketing. He is a past winner of the Early Career Award of the Society for Consumer Psychology, has co-chaired the Annual Winter Conference of the Society for Consumer Psychology, and was recognized as a Young Scholar by the Marketing Science Institute. He holds a PhD in Marketing from Columbia University, an MBA from the Indian Institute of Management Bangalore, and a B.Sc. (Hons.) from St. Stephen’s College, Delhi, and was previously on the faculty of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

For more information, please contact us:
Institute on Asian Consumer Insight
Nanyang Technological University, Nanyang Business School,
50 Nanyang Avenue, Blk S4, level B4, Singapore 639798
Tel: +65 6790 4966
Email: aci-institute@ntu.edu.sg

Anirban Mukhopadhyay
Professor of Marketing
Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies
School of Business and Management
Hong Kong University of Science and Technology