Behavioral and Brain Sciences

Open Peer Commentary

On the meaning and function of normative analysis: Conceptual blur in the rationality debate?

David R. Mandel a1
a1 Department of Psychology, University of Hertfordshire, Hatfield, Hertfordshire AL10 9AB, United Kingdom


The rationality debate centers on the meaning of deviations of decision makers' responses from the predictions/prescriptions of normative models. But for the debate to have significance, the meaning and functions of normative analysis must be clear. Presently, they are not, and the debate's persistence owes much to conceptual blur. An attempt is made here to clarify the concept of normative analysis.