1499226193 2 min read

Rational snacking: Young children’s decision-making on the marshmallow task is moderated by beliefs about environmental reliability | Kidd, C. et al., Cognition, 126, 109-114 2013

A brief paper about a recreation of the Stanford marshmallow experiment [1] with a twist, two groups were formed for this test, one was given a unreliable context, where the subject was being prepared to feel unsure of the promises being made, instead the context for the second group context was reliable meaning, all the promises were fulfilled.

Before reading the paper, I assumed the conclusion would draw little difference between the decisions made on both groups, this is to say, that no matter in which context a kid is in, they actions ought to be exactly the same, because _reasons_ (kids, right?) ... so much for holding casual determinism as the answer for all that is. Under reliable conditions the paper shows that individuals (or at least children) are, at the minimum, four times more likely to wait for something.

The final results suggest that the sense of reliability of other persons towards us, have an enormous impact in our life, which sounds like a really obvious thing, if you screw up with someone, broke promises, say lies, there would be obvious repercussions, but this paper shows that the reasoning on the decisions others may do about us, examines more than acts of bad will or mistakes we have made, it also takes into account our indirect actions that they are be able to perceive, it shows at the end that even if we're sure about our self-control we should always be careful when realizing any kind of public activity made.

[1]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stanford_marshmallow_experiment