The pros and cons of temporally near and distant action

Tal Eyal, Nira Liberman, Yaacov Trope, Eva Walther

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The present research demonstrated that in considering an action, considerations against (con) the action tend to be subordinate to considerations in favor of (pro) the action in that cons are considered only if the level of pros is sufficient, whereas pros are considered independent of the level of cons (Studies 1A and 1B). The authors therefore concluded that pros constitute a higher construal level than cons and predict, on the basis of temporal construal processes (Y. Trope & N. Liberman, 2003), that pros would be more salient in making decisions for the more distant future, whereas the reverse should hold for cons. As predicted, participants generated more pros and fewer cons toward new exam procedures (Study 2), public policies (Study 3), and personal and interpersonal behaviors (Studies 4-6) that were expected to take place in the more distant future. This research also examined the limiting conditions and the evaluative consequences of these shifts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)781-795
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of personality and social psychology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science


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