Doctoral thesis
Open access

The sensitivity of Pavlovian to Instrumental Transfer (PIT) paradigm to measure wanting for pleasant olfactory stimuli

ContributorsChilla, Chiara
DirectorsSander, David
Defense date2018-05-29

In sensory and consumer science, it has long been posited that liking measurement was the best method to understand preference and food choice behaviour (De Graaf et al., 2005; Kamen, 1962; Peryam & Pilgrim, 1957; Pilgrim, 1961; Pilgrim & Kramen, 1963; Schutz, 1957). Indeed, consumers laboratory experiments showed that products with high liking score are more often chosen compared to products with low liking score (De Graaf et al., 2005). However, newly pleasant products launched on the market, are not always the mostly bought by the consumers and do not have the success expected by business department. Consequently, a question is raised: Is the most pleasant product, the one that consumers really want? In addition, is it possible to measure independently the liking level from the motivation to obtain a specific product? Currently, the approaches used in industry to evaluate liking (and more globally the other emotions elicited by products) have their origin in clinical and academic psychology research (Cardello & Jaeger, 2016). A well-established theoretical framework to study liking and motivation is the Incentive Salience Theory (IST). The IST posits that the pursuit of a positive outcome (reward) depends on three distinct components: the motivation to obtain it (wanting), the pleasure felt during the consumption of it (liking), and the automatic associations and/or cognitive representations of the reward (learning). Animal studies have allowed measuring independently these components. Recently, based on animal methodology, a multitude of methods have been developed to measure the components of reward system in human. However, investigation of these components in human is more complex, mainly because more facets of the same components are presented in human and because human are able to fake a lot of behaviours. A promising method to be used in industrial setting to investigate consumer motivation, is the Pavlovian to Instrumental Transfer (PIT) paradigm. In fundamental research, this procedure provides a pure measure of the effort engaged to obtain a reward (“wanting”) independently of liking level felt during consumption of it and without asking explicitly cognitive desires motivating participant to obtain a reward. This thesis sought to (i) examine the sensitivity of the PIT procedure to measure “wanting” when two olfactory pleasant stimuli are simultaneously used, (ii) test the PIT procedure according to the physiological state of the participant and (iii) experimentally dissociate “wanting” from liking according to the needs of the participant. Finally, this thesis tried to bring evidence to conclude whether PIT could be used as a practical tool in industrial setting.

  • Autre - EMODOUR- project UN9046
Citation (ISO format)
CHILLA, Chiara. The sensitivity of Pavlovian to Instrumental Transfer (PIT) paradigm to measure wanting for pleasant olfactory stimuli. 2018. doi: 10.13097/archive-ouverte/unige:109240
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Creation10/11/2018 6:58:00 PM
First validation10/11/2018 6:58:00 PM
Update time03/15/2023 8:46:54 AM
Status update03/15/2023 8:46:53 AM
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