Scope Insensitivity

  • cognitive bias
  • behavior

Scope Neglect is the failure to value a problem proportionally to the size of the problem. In other words, people tend to place the same value on solving a small-scale problem as they do on solving a much larger-scale problem, even if the latter has more far-reaching consequences.

For example, if asked to donate money to prevent the extinction of a single animal species versus preventing the extinction of multiple species, people may be equally willing to donate the same amount of money for either cause, despite the fact that preventing multiple extinctions would have a much greater impact on biodiversity.

Scope neglect can have important implications in various fields including public policy, environmental conservation, and philanthropy. It can lead to suboptimal decision-making where limited resources are not allocated efficiently across different problems or causes.

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