Mental economics: Subjective representations of factors related to expected inflation
This paper presents three different methods for obtaining and representing information about cognitive representations of economic variables. In the first study, variables considered related to a focal variable (inflation) were elicited. The second study presents numerical ratio scales for the strengths of relationships between different economic variables related to the focal variable. The third study gives a method for deriving causal chains of variables linked to each other so that a change in the first variable in the chain ultimately may lead to a change in the focal variable. The cognitive representation of this was mapped onto a causal tree structure. This study also presents causal chains for the effects of a change in the focal variable (viz., effects of inflation directly and indirectly). Although the paper was primarily methodological in character a few observations of differences between economists and non-experts were reported.