Affective Influence on Judgments and Decisions: Moving Towards Core Mechanisms

This article reviews psychological accounts of affective influence on judgments and decisions and argues that these accounts can be enriched by insights from biopsychology. The authors show how biopsychological research helps (1) reveal the sources of values and feelings; (2) predict when affect will influence attentional, perceptual, memorial, and decision processes; and (3) identify precise mechanisms underlying the interaction between affective and cognitive systems. The authors also propose a specific biopsychological model of affective priming phenomena and show how this model deals with data that are hard to explain with purely psychological accounts. The authors conclude that a multilevel biopsychological perspective will ultimately provide a more constrained and plausible foundation for understanding psychological processes underlying affect, judgment, and decision.