The Intertemporal Choice

I was working on my TEDx presentation this week. This was work because the time allocated per presentation is 18 minutes. Surprisingly it’s always tough to simplify the message. I allocated some additional hours to fine tune my message.

It was not a coincidence that I wanted to write on intertemporal choices, was speaking on Time and was struggling with 18 minutes. This was a personal choice. But there are choices that we make in context of time. And how our decisions change with the context is something that we as a society don’t comprehend well. People tend to ignore (or atleast underweight) information about the future consequences of decision.

Moreover, we are in the age of instant gratification. Not only we are less patient regarding the fruits of our effort, but once we have the fruit, we don’t want to put it in cold storage. We want to savor it instantly. We underestimate our future wants and don’t realize that deferring the pleasure might be more valuable. We feel less concerned about future pleasure and pain simply because the time lies in the future. Our concern decreases proportionally as the future gets farther.

Instant pleasure could be…

This article was written for Business Standard

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2 Responses to “The Intertemporal Choice”

  1. Pradeep says:


    Article not yet published in Business Standard


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