Self-Control Problems of the Dual Self

  • Shinsuke Ikeda
Part of the Advances in Japanese Business and Economics book series (AJBE, volume 10)


In the previous chapter, I explained hyperbolic discounting, a source of behavioral bias which people exhibit when making intertemporal choices. Taking into account 10 years into the future while discounting tomorrow is an act that reflects humans’ dual nature. Under hyperbolic discounting, when the benefit (or the cost) of a choice is near at hand, people become motivated to prioritize the immediate benefit and revise the original plan, because the subjective discount rate suddenly increases, making them impatient. Of course, people do not always give in to such temptation and choose the “easy” option. In this chapter, I would like to refer to some data, theoretically consider what decision-making problems arise under hyperbolic discounting, and examine how we take actions to deal with these problems.


Polar Bear Permanent Income Liquid Asset Hyperbolic Discount Spending Level 


  1. Ainslie, G. W. (1974). Impulse control in pigeons. Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior, 21(3), 485–489.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Aoto, Y. (2009). Documentation of high school dropouts: Where poverty begins now. Tokyo: Chikumashobo Ltd (in Japanese).Google Scholar
  3. Ariely, D., & Wertenbroch, K. (2002). Procrastination, deadline, and performance: Self-control by precommitment. Psychological Science, 13(3), 219–224.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Baumeister, R. F., & Tierney, J. (2012). Willpower: Rediscovering the greatest human strength. New York: Penguin.Google Scholar
  5. Diamond, P., & Köszegi, B. (2003). Quasi-hyperbolic discounting and retirement. Journal of Public Economics, 87, 1839–1872.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Evans, G. W., & Schamberg, M. A. (2009). Child poverty, chronic stress, and adult working memory. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 106(16), 6545–6549.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Hirota, H., Masuda, S., & Sakagami, T. (Eds.). (2006). Risk in psychology introduction to behavioral decision-making (revised). Tokyo: Keio University Press (in Japanese).Google Scholar
  8. Kahneman, D. (2011). Thinking fast and slow. London: Allen Lane.Google Scholar
  9. Kawanishi, M. (2012). New history of Japanese literary writers, 7, Iwanami-Shoten (in Japanese).Google Scholar
  10. Laibson, D. (1997). Golden eggs and hyperbolic discounting. Quarterly Journal of Economics, 112(2), 443–478.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Laibson, D., Repetto, A., & Tobacman, J. (2003). A debt puzzle. In P. Aghion, R. Frydman, J. Stiglitz, & M. Woodford (Eds.), Knowledge, information, and expectations in modern economics: In honor of Edmund S. Phelps. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  12. Laibson, D., Repetto, A., & Tobacman, J. (2007). Estimating discount functions with consumption choices over the lifecycle (NBER Working Paper, No. 13314).Google Scholar
  13. Muraven, M., Tice, D. M., & Baumeister, R. F. (1998). Self-control as limited resource: Regulatory depletion patterns. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 74(3), 774–789.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. O’Donoghue, T., & Rabin, M. (1999). Doing it now or later. American Economic Review, 89(1), 103–124.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. O’Donoghue, T., & Rabin, M. (2001). Choice and procrastination. Quarterly Journal of Economics, 116(1), 121–160.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Oshio, T., Sano, S., & Kobayashi, M. (2010). Child poverty as a determinant of life outcomes: Evidence from nationwide surveys in Japan. Social Indicator Research, 99, 81–99.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Ramiro, L. S., Madrid, B. J., & Brown, D. W. (2010). Adverse child experiences (ACE) and health-risk behaviors among adults in a developing country setting. Child Abuse & Neglect, 34, 842–855.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Strotz, R. H. (1955). Myopia and inconsistency in dynamic utility maximization. Review of Economic Sturdies, 23(3), 165–180.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Tangney, J. P., Baumeister, R. F., & Boone, A. L. (2004). High self-control predicts good adjustment, less pathology, better grades, and interpersonal success. Journal of Personality, 72(2), 271–324.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Thaler, R. H. (1990). Anomalies saving, fungibility, and mental accounts. Journal of Economic Perspectives, 4(1), 193–205.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Wong, W.-K. (2008). How much time-inconsistency is there and does it matter? Evidence on self-awareness, size, and effects. Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, 68(3–4), 645–656.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Japan 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shinsuke Ikeda
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Social and Economic ResearchOsaka UniversityIbarakiJapan

Personalised recommendations