Recently, the Marketing Department invited Professor Robin Soster from the University of Arkansas to speak about her research. Professor Soster presented a paper titled, “How cost reclassification can reduce rumination on loss and eliminate the sunk cost effect in preliminary choice settings” on Friday, November 13. This research examines the effect of cost reclassification (i.e., reframing sunk costs as instrumental toward a newly-available alternative) on the propensity of consumers to switch from preliminary courses of action. Importantly, this work helps shape existing theories about why consumers make suboptimal choices when they have incurred some costs in making progress toward these choices, especially when new options appear more favorable.
Robin L. Soster is assistant professor of marketing at the Sam M. Walton College of Business. She earned a Ph.D. in marketing from the University of South Carolina. Her research interests focus on judgment and decision making, especially involving time and money, and individual differences that impact consumption behavior. Soster has published in Journal of Consumer Research and Journal of Public Policy and Marketing, among others.