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When and how does labour lead to love? The ontogeny and mechanisms of the IKEA effect

Marsh, Lauren E.; Kanngiesser, Patricia; Hood, Bruce

Authors

Patricia Kanngiesser

Bruce Hood



Abstract

We elevate our constructions to a special status in our minds. This ‘IKEA’ effect leads us to believe that our creations are more valuable than items that are identical, but constructed by another. This series of studies utilises a developmental perspective to explore why this bias exists. Study 1 elucidates the ontogeny of the IKEA effect, demonstrating an emerging bias at age 5, corresponding with key developmental milestones in self-concept formation. Study 2 assesses the role of effort, revealing that the IKEA effect is not moderated by the amount of effort invested in the task in 5-to-6-year olds. Finally, Study 3 examines whether feelings of ownership moderate the IKEA effect, finding that ownership alone cannot explain why children value their creations more. Altogether, results from this study series are incompatible with existing theories of the IKEA bias. Instead, we propose a new framework to examine biases in decision making. Perhaps the IKEA effect reflects a link between our creations and our self-concept, emerging at age 5, leading us to value them more positively than others’ creations.

Citation

Marsh, L. E., Kanngiesser, P., & Hood, B. (2018). When and how does labour lead to love? The ontogeny and mechanisms of the IKEA effect. Cognition, 170, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cognition.2017.10.012

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Oct 17, 2017
Online Publication Date Nov 5, 2017
Publication Date Jan 2, 2018
Deposit Date Nov 8, 2017
Publicly Available Date Nov 8, 2017
Journal Cognition
Print ISSN 0010-0277
Electronic ISSN 1873-7838
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 170
DOI https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cognition.2017.10.012
Keywords Ownership; Value; IKEA-effect; Development; Effort justification
Public URL http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/47966
Publisher URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0010027717302743
Copyright Statement Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0

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Copyright Statement
Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0





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