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An empathy gap is a cognitive bias in which a person does not empathize or predict correctly how he/she will feel in the future, i.e. what kind of emotional state he/she will be in.

The term empathy gap was coined by Harvard University psychologist Daniel Gilbert. One of the ideas behind the concept of empathy gap is that emotions evolved in animals because that way they could react appropriately to situations in their environment, and individuals change their emotional states accordingly, but their affective forecasting is often affected by certain cognitive biases, which also include the so-called impact bias, in which individuals inaccurately forecast the intensity of their possible emotions when a given event takes place.

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