Journal article

Choice, accountability, and effortful processing in escalation situations

Publication Details
Author(s): Wolff HG, Moser K
Publisher: Hogrefe
Publication year: 2008
Volume: 216
Pages range: 235–243
ISSN: 0044-3409


Many studies on escalation of commitment observe only a single decision following negative feedback, although theoretical approaches to escalation behavior depict escalation as a progression over time. The present paper builds on Brockner and Rubin's (1985) "tunnel vision" account that suggests a distinction between early and late stages of the escalation process. We used a dynamic paradigm, observing repeated decisions following negative feedback and manipulated choice and accountability in order to examine effects of justification on the progression of escalation behavior. Furthermore, reading times are used as a measure of effortful processing to investigate the mediating cognitive processes that lead to escalation behavior. Results show that the combination of choice with accountability leads to escalation behavior at later stages of the escalation process and that effortful processing mediates this interaction of choice, accountability, and escalation behavior. © 2008 Hogrefe & Huber Publishers.

How to cite
APA: Wolff, H.-G., & Moser, K. (2008). Choice, accountability, and effortful processing in escalation situations. Zeitschrift für Psychologie-Journal of Psychology, 216, 235–243.

MLA: Wolff, Hans-Georg, and Klaus Moser. "Choice, accountability, and effortful processing in escalation situations." Zeitschrift für Psychologie-Journal of Psychology 216 (2008): 235–243.

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