Selecting products that are well designed seems to reaffirm a person’s positive opinions about themselves.
Any designer who has ever sought to divest a client of one of their possessions, whether that be a tawdry piece of art or a beat up old chair or something else has seen first hand that once something belongs to a person, it becomes special and important, at least in their eyes.
Research by Neary and her colleagues has determined that children from 3 to 6 years old are more likely to believe manmade objects are owned by someone than natural objects (such as pine cones).
Researchers noted long ago that men and women differ in ways that they prefer to personalize their environments.
Entries here often discuss the psychological significance of physical possessions.
Researchers at the University of New Hampshire and Yale have determined that people place less monetary value on their possessions if they feel more secure interpersonally (i.e., feel accepted and loved by other people).
Communicating through possessions has been popular since there have been possessions, but some people have always been able to “speak” louder in this way than others.
Ordabayeva and Chandon investigated people’s behavior when distribution of goods is fairly equal.
Brunia and Hartjes-Gosseling conducted a case study at a Dutch government agency to learn about workspace personalization when offices are not assigned to individuals.
Maddux and his colleagues studied cultural differences in the endowment effect (the tendency of owners to value objects more than potential buyers of those objects).