Midbrain Mutiny

The Picoeconomics and Neuroeconomics of Disordered Gambling: Economic Theory and Cognitive Science

The explanatory power of economic theory is tested by the phenomenon of irrational consumption, examples of which include such addictive behaviors as disordered and pathological gambling. Midbrain Mutiny examines different economic models of disordered gambling, using the frameworks of neuroeconomics (which analyzes decision making in the brain) and picoeconomics (which analyzes patterns of consumption behavior), and drawing on empirical evidence about behavior and the brain.

The book describes addiction in neuroeconomic terms as chronic disruption of the balance between the midbrain dopamine system and the prefrontal and frontal serotonergic system, and reviews recent evidence from trials testing the effectiveness of antiaddiction drugs. The authors argue that the best way to understand disordered and addictive gambling is with a hybrid picoeconomic-neuroeconomic model.

Table of Contents

  1. Contents
  2. Note to Readers about Economic Theory and Cognitive Science
  3. 1. Is There Such a Thing as Addiction?
  4. 2. Gambling in Scientific Focus
  5. 3. Picoeconomics, Impulsive Consumption, and Disordered Gambling
  6. 4. Behavioral and Psychological Investigations of Disordered Gambling
  7. 5. The Neuroeconomics of Addiction
  8. 6. Addictive Gambling as the Basic Form of Addiction
  9. 7. Clinical Evidence and Implications
  10. 8. The Microexplanation of Disordered Gambling
  11. Notes
  12. References
  13. Index