How Do People in a Group Make Collective Decisions? Popular Choices Matter!

by Reshma Anand on  September 21, 2015 at 10:43 AM Research News
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How is it possible for you decide on a particular thing in your group of friends? Foremost popular options are analyzed and enough support for a given choice triggers the final decision, whereas if a choice has more variations it is chosen less frequently, says a new research.
How Do People in a Group Make Collective Decisions? Popular Choices Matter!
How Do People in a Group Make Collective Decisions? Popular Choices Matter!
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Researchers from Carnegie Mellon University have developed a model that explains how groups make collective decisions. It has shown that positive feedback during the exploration process proves useful for making good and quick decisions.

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"Throughout the presidential primary process in US, people are trying to find an ideal candidate in a crowded landscape. The person in the lead -- say Donald Trump -- gets more media coverage and attention, which could lead to more people thinking about voting for him based on name recognition," said David Hagmann.

Using a Polya urn scheme -- a statistical model in which balls of different colors are repeatedly drawn from a container and previously picked colors become more likely to be drawn again -- the researchers were able to look at how long it takes to make decisions and calculate their accuracy.

"Most interesting, when one choice has more variation in how it is perceived, it is chosen less frequently, establishing systemic risk aversion," said co-researcher Russell Golman.

The model also helps in explaining how trends take off, such as the the success of word-of-mouth marketing tactics. The study was published in the Journal Science Advances.

Source: IANS
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