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Variational analysis in psychological modeling

T.Q. Bao(btruong***at***nmu.edu)
B. S. Mordukhovich(boris***at***math.wayne.edu)
A. Soubeyran(antoine.soubeyran***at***gmail.com)

Abstract: This paper develops some mathematical models arising in psychology and some other areas of behavioral sciences that are formalized via general preferences with variable ordering structures. Our considerations are based on the recent “variational rationality approach” that unifies numerous theories in different branches of behavioral sciences by using, in particular, worthwhile change and stay dynamics and variational traps. In the mathematical framework of this approach, we derive a new variational principle, which can be viewed as an extension of the Ekeland variational principle to the case of set-valued mappings on quasimetric spaces with cone-valued ordering variable structures. Such a general setting is proved to be appropriate for broad applications to the functioning of goal systems in psychology, which are developed in the paper. In this way we give a certain answer to the following striking question: in the world, where all things change (preferences, motivations, resistances, etc.), where goal systems drive a lot of entwined course pursuits between means and ends---what can stay fixed for a while? The obtained mathematical results and new insights open the door to developing powerful models of adaptive behavior, which strongly depart from pure static general equilibrium models of the Walrasian type that are typical in economics.

Keywords: variable ordering structures, multiobjective optimization, variable preferences, variational principles, variational rationality, stability and change dynamics, variational traps

Category 1: Convex and Nonsmooth Optimization (Nonsmooth Optimization )

Category 2: Other Topics (Multi-Criteria Optimization )

Category 3: Applications -- OR and Management Sciences (Other )


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Entry Submitted: 11/07/2013
Entry Accepted: 11/07/2013
Entry Last Modified: 11/07/2013

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