Affect and cognition in criminal decision making

Jean-Louis van Gelder (Editor), Henk Elffers (Editor), Danielle Reynald (Editor), Daniel Nagin (Editor)

Research output: Book/ReportBookAcademic

17 Citations (Scopus)
999 Downloads (Pure)


Research and theorizing on criminal decision making has not kept pace with recent developments in other domains of human decision making. Whereas criminal decision making theory is still largely dominated by cognitive approaches and rational choice-based models, psychologists, behavioural economists and neuroscientists have found affect (i.e., emotions, moods) and visceral factors such as sexual arousal and drug craving to play a fundamental role in human decision processes. This book presents alternative approaches that examine the infl uence of affect on criminal decisions. In doing so, it generalizes extant cognitive theories of criminal decision making by incorporating affect into the decision process. In two conceptual and ten empirical chapters it is carefully argued how affect infl uences criminal decisions alongside rational and cognitive considerations. The empirical studies use a wide variety of methods ranging from interviews and observations to experimental approaches and questionnaires, and treat crimes as diverse as robbery, pilfering, and sex offences. It will be of interest to criminologists, psychologists, judgment and decision making researchers, behavioural economists and sociologists alike.

Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationLondon
Number of pages246
ISBN (Electronic)978-0-203-07598-2
ISBN (Print)978-0-415-65848-5
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes

Publication series

NameCrime science series


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