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A blog about cognitive and behavioural economics. Building mathematical models of how psychology influences economic systems.


Discussion 3 of 3: Lassie died one night

Thu, 09 Feb 2017 09:57:52 GMT

The much-delayed final episode in a short series of posts - part 1 and part 2 here. Lassie died one night. As Thomas Schelling* pointed out in a thought-provoking 1982 essay, millions of people watched it happen on television one Sunday evening, and cried. Yet they all knew Lassie was not real – and that the dog who played her was probably in perfect health. Why did they experience the same emotions, the same sense of loss that they would expect to feel if their own dog had died, or even...