Information sampling and group decision making: The effects of an advocacy decision procedure and task experience

Tobias Greitemeyer*, Stefan Schulz-Hardt, Felix C. Brodbeck, Dieter Frey

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Group discussions tend to focus on information that was previously known by all members (shared information) rather than information known by only 1 member (unshared information). If the shared information implies a suboptimal alternative, this sampling bias is associated with inaccurate group decisions. The present study examines the impact of 2 factors on information exchange and decision quality: (a) an advocacy group decision procedure versus unstructured discussion and (b) task experience. Results show that advocacy groups discussed both more shared and unshared information than free-discussion groups. Further, with increasing experience, more unshared information was mentioned in advocacy groups. In contrast, there was no such increase in unstructured discussions. Yet advocacy groups did not significantly improve their decision quality with experience.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)31-42
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Experimental Psychology: Applied
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2006



  • Dialectical techniques
  • Group decision making
  • Hidden profile
  • Information sampling

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