Gollwitzer, P. M., & Oettingen, G. (2008). The question-behavior effect from an action control perspective. Journal of Consumer Psychology, 18, 107-110.
The question-behavior effect is discussed by taking an action control perspective. With respect to the determinants of the effect, it is asked whether its strength is dependent on the features of the behaviors at issue (e.g., difficulty), how the question targets the critical behaviors (e.g., in terms of attitudes or intentions, frequency or intensity), and in which context it is asked. With respect to the psychological processes, it is questioned whether the activation of positive implicit attitudes underlies the effect. Finally, to counter unwanted question-behavior effects on risky behaviors, an intervention treatment geared at blocking such effects is suggested that is based on the self-regulation of goal setting (by mental contrasting; Oettingen, 2000) and goal implementation (by forming if-then plans; Gollwitzer, 1999).