Mar. 08, 2018


The paper "Time-Inconsistent Planning: A Computational Problem in Behavioral Economics" co-authored by Dr. Sigal Oren from the Department of Computer Science at Ben-Gurion University and Prof. Jon Kleinberg from Cornell University was nominated and selected to appear in the prestigous research highlights section of the Communications of the ACM Magazine. This section features more approachable versions of influential papers that previously appeared in a conference or a journal.

The paper proposes a graph theoretic model to capture the effects of a well known cognitive bias on planning – present bias. In short, individuals exhibiting this bias tend to overrate the cost of completing a task now and as a result postpone it. Before the introduction of this framework different scenarios in which present bias affects planning were studied in isolation. Introducing graphs to model the planning problem not only allows to capture complex scenarios but also provides an opportunity to analyze all the scenarios simultaneously.