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Loo, H. van

Author: Hanna van Loo

Graduation Year: 2008 (Research master)

Department: Practical Philosophy

Master's Thesis:

The burdens of choice



Regardless of whether we look at power companies, day-care centers or health insurances: Dutch politicians have a tendency to increase consumer choice. In general, freedom of choice is regarded as important, and its importance seems to be uncontested. The prevailing assumption is that more choice is better than less, or at least that more choice cannot be worse than less choice. But is it always better to have more options to choose from? In this master thesis I investigated this question with regard to three objectives to which choice is supposed to lead, i.e. the satisfaction of preferences, control and freedom. Is it possible that more choice options decrease the extent to which you can satisfy your preferences, the possibility to determine facts in the world, and the degree of freedom you have? The answer on this question appears to be affirmative. In other words, more choice may not always be better.

Last modified:01 November 2013 2.50 p.m.