… We want to eliminate the distress of the unknown. We want, in other words, to achieve “cognitive closure.” This term was coined by the social psychologist Arie Kruglanski, who eventually defined it as “individuals’ desire for a firm answer to a question and an aversion toward ambiguity,” a drive for certainty in the face of a less than certain world. When faced with heightened ambiguity and a lack of clear-cut answers, we need to know—and as quickly as possible. …

Why We Need Answers: The Theory of Cognitive closure