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Reward systems are one of the most actively studied topics in (cognitive) neuroscience and prediction error - that is, deviations from expected "future" reward - play a big role in that. Since you're particularly interested in models, I recommend checking out the work of Matt Botvinick and Nathaniel Daw. Here are a few papers that might be good starting ...


Ok, I found something. Gollwitzer and colleagues (2009) have published an interesting paper on this question. First of all, they say that, yes, publically stated intentions should lead to commitment, because the person wants to act in way that is consistent with the communicated intentions (e.g., Cialdini, Wosinka, Barrett, Butner, & Gornik-Durose, ...

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