Elanor F Williams

Elanor F Williams
Washington University in St. Louis | WUSTL , Wash U · Olin Business School

PhD

About

18
Publications
15,638
Reads
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887
Citations
Introduction
Additional affiliations
August 2008 - July 2012
University of Florida
Position
  • PostDoc Position
Education
August 2003 - August 2008
Cornell University
Field of study
  • Social Psychology

Publications

Publications (18)
Article
Many products and services are designed to make caregiving easier, from premade meals for feeding families to robo-cribs that automatically rock babies to sleep. Yet, using these products may come with a cost: consumers may feel they have not exerted enough effort. Nine experiments show that consumers feel like better caregivers when they put more...
Article
The notion that people’s choices reveal something about who they are is fundamental to theories of self‐perception, self‐signaling, and preference construction, and yet, much is still unknown about the impact of the metacognitive experiences that accompany those choices. The present research explores how the relative ease or difficulty of choosing...
Article
Consumers typically prefer freedom of choice, but when faced with a choice they might regret, they may prefer freedom from choice. Eight experiments show that people delegate difficult decisions, regardless of the decision's importance, and regardless of their potential surrogate's expertise. Delegation stems from a desire to avoid responsibility f...
Article
Full-text available
We propose that many giver-recipient discrepancies in the gift-giving literature can be explained, at least partially, by the notion that when evaluating the quality of a gift, givers primarily focus on the moment of exchange, whereas recipients primarily focus on how valuable a gift will be once owned. In this review, we summarize the variety of e...
Article
Full-text available
Defaults are extremely effective at covertly guiding choices, which raises concerns about how to employ them ethically and responsibly. Consumer advocates have proposed that disclosing how defaults are intended to influence choices could help protect consumers from being unknowingly manipulated. This research shows that consumers appreciate transpa...
Article
Although people prize the ability to choose when making choices for themselves, this right may become a burden when tasked with choosing for others. We show that people are more likely to delegate choices for others than for themselves, especially choices with potentially negative consequences. This is driven by a desire to avoid feeling responsibl...
Article
Visceral states like thirst, hunger, and fatigue can alter motivations, predictions, and even memory. Across 3 studies, we demonstrate that such "hot" states can also shift moral standards and increase dishonest behavior. Compared to participants who had just eaten or who had not yet exercised, hungry and thirsty participants were more likely to be...
Data
Full-text available
Despite the growing prevalence of products that allow people to improve themselves, there is limited research to date on how consumers perceive the use of these products. We introduce a theoretical framework that explains how consumers interpret the effects of such products and how they judge the fairness of their use. Five experiments show that co...
Article
Full-text available
Despite the growing prevalence of products that allow people to improve themselves , there is limited research to date on how consumers perceive the use of these products. We introduce a theoretical framework that explains how consumers interpret the effects of such products and how they judge the fairness of their use. Five experiments show that c...
Article
Full-text available
People often hold inflated views of their performance on intellectual tasks, with poor performers exhibiting the most inflation. What leads to such excessive confidence? We suggest that the more people approach such tasks in a "rational" (i.e., consistent, algorithmic) manner, relative to those who use more variable or ad hoc approaches, the more c...
Article
Thirty years ago, Hirschman and Holbrook (1982) advocated greater attention to hedonic consumption and the myriad ways in which consumers seek pleasure and enjoyment. A thorough review finds that the topic has much appeal and that consumer research has made significant progress toward understanding some of its parameters. However, many questions re...
Article
We examine whether people call to mind different manifestations of various traits when considering what they are like than when considering what others are like. Specifically, do people think that peak manifestations of their traits and abilities best capture who they are themselves, but that other people are better captured by their average perfor...
Article
Full-text available
An accurate assessment of an individual often requires taking their potential into account. Across six studies the authors found that people are more inclined to do so when evaluating themselves than when evaluating others, such that people credit themselves for their perceived potential more than they credit others for theirs. Participants rated p...
Article
Consumers repeatedly fail to bring about desired outcomes, and yet they also fail to learn from their own and others’ mistakes. This paper proposes a potential cause for this failure to learn: people believe that they will have more control over the future than they had over the past. Across several real-life and hypothetical scenarios, participant...
Article
First experiences are highly influential, but we show that even non-first experiences can be made to seem like firsts and to consequently disproportionately influence judgment. In Studies 1 and 2, one piece of a series of information was framed to appear to have “first” status: A weather report that appeared at the end of a sequence of weather repo...
Article
Full-text available
People are full of plans, goals, hopes, and fears-future-oriented thoughts that constitute a significant part of the self-concept. But are representations of others similarly future oriented? Studies 1a and 1b demonstrate that the future is seen as a larger component of the self than of another person. Study 2 found that because self-identity is ti...
Article
A question that has plagued self-enhancement research is whether participants truly believe the overly positive self-assessments they report, or whether better-than-average effects reflect mere hopes or self-presentation. In a test of people’s belief in the accuracy of their self-enhancing trait ratings, participants made a series of bets, each tim...

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