J. van der Pligt
N.K. de Vries
- Anticipated affect and behavioral choice
- Basic and Applied Social Psychology
- Volume | Issue number
- 18 | 2
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Economics and Business (FEB)
Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Amsterdam School of Economics Research Institute (ASE-RI)
Psychology Research Institute (PsyRes)
Most research on the impact of affect on attitudes and behavior emphasizes the effect of past and present affective reactions. In this article we focus on anticipated, postbehavioral, affective reactions. The influence of anticipated affective reactions on a number of behaviors was investigated in the context of Ajzen's theory of planned behavior (Ajzen, 1985, 1991). Results showed that anticipated affective reactions predicted behavioral intentions independent from general attitudes (evaluations) toward the behavior. As expected, anticipated affective reactions were more negative than attitudes toward the behavior for behaviors with negatively valued consequences and more positive for behaviors with positively valued consequences. Moreover, for three of the four investigated behaviors, anticipated affective reactions explained a significant proportion of variance in behavioral expectations, over and above the components of the theory of planned behavior. On average, behavioral expectations explained more than half of the variance in actual behavior, which was measured 4 weeks later. Implications of these findings for our understanding of the attitude concept, and more practical implications for behavioral change programs, are discussed.
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