Review of Behavioral Economics > Vol 5 > Issue 3-4

Rationality as a Process

Mario J. Rizzo, New York University, USA, , Glen Whitman, California State University, USA
Suggested Citation
Mario J. Rizzo and Glen Whitman (2018), "Rationality as a Process", Review of Behavioral Economics: Vol. 5: No. 3-4, pp 201-219.

Publication Date: 31 Dec 2018
© 2018 M. J. Rizzo and G. Whitman
Behavioral Economics


Open Access

This is published under the terms of CC-BY.

In this article:
1. Intrapersonal Equilibrium 
2. A Wicksteedian Framework 
3. Inconsistency as Dialectical Reasoning 
4. Errors and Learning 
5. Conclusions 


Individual decision-making is not adequately portrayed by focusing on static rationality properties. The static approach can mistake rationality-in-process for bounded rationality or irrationality. We consider a sampling of intellectual frameworks that address decisionmaking rationality as a process, including intrapersonal arbitrage, Wicksteed’s principle of price, dialectical reasoning, and errordriven learning. We conclude that the approach to normative analysis shared by both neoclassical and behavioral economists is not the only possible one and that, in fact, it misses an important aspect of human decision-making. Evaluations based on the static approach are at best incomplete and likely to be misleading.



Review of Behavioral Economics, Volume 5, Issue 3-4 Special issue Paternalism: Articles Overiew
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