Friday, April 24, 2009

How Much Would You Pay to Avoid Pain?

Yes, this is creepy but interesting.

Researchers wanted to know how much money people were willing to pay to avoid pain and discomfort. So, they gave study participants cash and told them they could keep whatever they had left over.

Then they were electrocuted. Yes, I said ELECTROCUTED. The participants were given one pulse of electric shock and asked how much they would pay to avoid 15 more shocks.

After that, a computer program randomly determined what they would pay. If the computer picked more money than what the person was willing to pay, they got shocked again. If the computer selected a lower amount, the participant paid that amount so they wouldn't get shocked again.

This was repeated on each participant a number of times with different shock intensities.

The results of this study determined that participants were willing to pay more to avoid pain if it was "more intense compared to previous trials". Surprising (or maybe not) participants also based what they were willing to pay on how much money they were given vs. their overall wealth.

To read about this study click HERE.


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