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Cognitive Biases

What is Attribute Substitution?

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Attribute substitution is an attempt to solve a complex problem with a heuristic attribute that is an incorrect substitution. In other words, people may substitute a hard problem for an easy one incorrectly and without realizing it.
This can take many forms but the classic example is the substitution of an emotion such as fear for a problem. Attribute substitution is known to cause inaccurate assessments of emotional topics such as dread risks. For example, a person may be worse at assessing the price of insurance against something they fear such as a plane crash or terrorism as opposed to regular life insurance.
Overview: Attribute Substitution
Incorrect substitution of a problem with a heuristic attribute such as emotion, generalization or analogy.
Answering a question with an emotional gut reaction as opposed to a well considered rational thought process.
Making broad generalizations about a group of people and using such stereotypes to make decisions.
Incorrectly reducing a complex problem to a simple analogy.
Related Concepts

Cognitive Biases

This is the complete list of articles we have written about cognitive biases.
Ambiguity Effect
Backfire Effect
Base Rate
Circular Reasoning
Cognitive Bias
Cognitive Dissonance
Complexity Bias
Crab Mentality
Creeping Normality
Curse Of Knowledge
Decoy Effect
Exposure Effect
False Analogy
False Hope
Fear Of Youth
Gambler's Fallacy
Golden Hammer
Halo Effect
Hindsight Bias
Negativity Bias
Optimism Bias
Peak-End Rule
Positive Bias
Sour Grapes
Survivorship Bias
Us vs Them
Victim Mentality
Wishful Thinking
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Cognitive Biases

A list of common cognitive biases explained.

Curse Of Knowledge

Why experts have trouble communicating.

Optimism Bias

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Decoy Effect

A cognitive bias that is well known in marketing circles.

Biases vs Heuristics

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Information Cascade

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Functional Fixedness

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Boil The Frog

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Objective vs Subjective

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Intellectual Diversity

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Creative Value

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Benefit Of Doubt

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The definition of pessimism with examples.
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