Variations in Decision-Making Profiles by Age and Gender
A Cluster-Analytic Approach
Published in: Personality and Individual Differences, v. 85, Oct. 2015, p. 19-24
Posted on RAND.org on June 19, 2015
Using cluster-analysis, we investigated whether rational, intuitive, spontaneous, dependent, and avoidant styles of decision making combined to form distinct decision-making profiles that differed by age and gender. Self-report survey data were collected from 1075 members of RAND's American Life Panel (56.2% female, 18–93 years, Mage = 53.49). Three decision-making profiles were identified: affective/experiential, independent/self-controlled, and an interpersonally-oriented dependent profile. Older people were less likely to be in the affective/experiential profile and more likely to be in the independent/self-controlled profile. Women were less likely to be in the affective/experiential profile and more likely to be in the interpersonally-oriented dependent profile. Interpersonally-oriented profiles are discussed as an overlooked but important dimension of how people make important decisions.