Abstract

Decades of research provide strong evidence that consumers process information in two distinct and qualitatively different ways, rational and experiential. However, little research has addressed situational influences on thinking style, and there have been no attempts to simultaneously measure and validate two-dimensional situation-specific thinking. We develop and validate a new instrument for measuring situation-specific thinking style using performance tasks, consumer Web activities, and differing motivations. We establish differences in thinking style across types of tasks and motivations, and congruence effects related to the fit of situation-specific thinking style and the nature of the task on performance and attitudinal outcomes.

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