Scott Atran analyses the limits of rational choice in political and cultural conflict

Ideas Lab on Decision Making at the 2017 World Economic Forum, Davos, Switzerland 

What motivates young people to join violent extremist movements such as ISIS? Scott Atran, Research Associate at the Centre for International Studies and Professor of Anthropology at the University of Oxford, shares research on the differences between the “value-driven decision-making” of “devoted actors” and the “economic decision-making” of “rational actors”, and argues that offering people material incentives to abandon their sacred values is counter-productive.