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Time Discounting in Relation to Career Preferences

Authors
Journal
Journal of Vocational Behavior
0001-8791
Publisher
Elsevier
Volume
58
Issue
1
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1006/jvbe.2000.1758
Disciplines
  • Design

Abstract

Abstract The present study used a longitudinal design to test aspects of Kirby and Herrnstein's (1995) theory of time discounting. Specifically, the prediction that preferences reverse due to changes in delay was tested in a longitudinal study of career-path selections made by employees in a Hong Kong real estate consultancy. Over a 3-year period, 16 of 23 subjects reversed their career preference from a future senior managerial position to a lesser management role available earlier. Organizational and cultural factors that may have influenced these preference changes are discussed and areas of future research suggested. The study provides supporting evidence from the career selection perspective that preferences are not necessarily invariant across time.

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