Risk aversion in the adjustment of speed-accuracy tradeoff depending on time constraints

Sci Rep. 2019 Aug 13;9(1):11732. doi: 10.1038/s41598-019-48052-0.


Humans are often required to make decisions under time constraints and to adjust speed-accuracy tradeoff (SAT) based on time constraints. Previous studies have investigated how humans adjust SAT depending on the time discount rate of expected gain. Although the expected gain of actions can be determined by both gain and probability, only situations where gain decreases over time have been tested. Considering the effect of risk on decision-making, the difference in time discount factors may modulate the response strategies for SAT, since temporal changes in variance of possible outcomes differ when gain or probability decreases over time. Here, we investigated the response strategies for SAT under different time discount factors. Participants were required to select one of the two options with different initial values in situations where the expected gain of options declined over time by a linear decrease in gain or probability. Comparison of response strategies between conditions revealed that response times in the gain condition were longer than those in the probability condition, possibly due to risk-aversion. These findings indicate the existence of common rules underpinning sensorimotor and economic decision-making.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Algorithms
  • Decision Making*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Models, Theoretical*
  • Probability
  • Reaction Time
  • Young Adult