Maximizing versus satisficing in the digital age: Disjoint scales and the case for "construct validity"

Raffaella Misuraca, Barbara Fasolo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Citations (Scopus)


A question facing us today, in the new and rapidly evolving digital age, is whether searching for the best option being a maximizer leads to greater happiness and better outcomes than settling on the first good enough option found or“satisficing.”Answers to this question inform behavioural insights to improve well-being and decision-making in policy and organizational settings. Yet, the answers to this fundamental question of measurement of the happiness of a maximizer versus a satisficer in the current psychological literature are: 1) conflicting; 2) anchored on the use of the first scale published to measure maximization as an individual-difference, and 3) unable to describe the search behaviour of decision makers navigating the digital world with tools of the 21st century - apps, smartphones or tablets, and most often all of them. We present, based on a review and analysis of the literature and scales, a call to stop the development of more maximization scales. Furthermore, we articulate the argument for a re-definition of maximizing that balances the face validity of the construct and the relevanceto decision making in an age of digital tools so that future scales are useful for future choice architects andresearcher
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages9
JournalPersonality and Individual Differences
Publication statusPublished - 2018


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Psychology(all)

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