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EMAC 2021 Annual Conference

Brains reveal immediate consumption behaviors during the COVID-19 pandemic

Published: May 25, 2021


Meiling Yin, Sungkyunkwan University; Han Na Choi, Sungkyunkwan University; Eun-Ju Lee, Sungkyunkwan University


The fear of infection, restrictions on social activities and economic contraction caused by COVID-19 increases psychological anxiety. In these depressing situations, consumers are often making decisions between impulsive consumption versus rational consumption and time versus money priority. This research examines the effect of the level of mild depression inherent in individual consumers on the need for money and time discount. In Experiment 1, the depression was manipulated by showing a positive vs negative (COVID-19) image. In Experiment 2, we use EEG (Electroencephalography), which is one of the neuroscience research methods to see the brain response of consumers' mild depression to information processing. We seek to gain greater profits later by sacrificing the joy we can enjoy right now in preparation for the future. Consumers are expected to make decisions about purchases and rewards depending on their degree of depression. Keywords: psychological anxiety, COVID-19, electroencephalography, depression, neuroscience research