Week 1 When Everything Looks Like a Nail: Building Better “Behavioral Economics” Teams By Jason Collins Nudges Alone Won’t Save Nemo: Conservation in the Great Barrier Reef By John Pickering From Ph.D. to Policy: Facilitating Connections Between Junior Scholars and Policymakers By Ashley Whillans and Heather Devine Shouldn’t We Make It Easy to Use Behavioral Science for Good? By Manasee Desai RCTs Are Not (Always) the Answer By Tania Ramos and João Matos Week 2 Why Governments Need to Nudge Themselves By Michael Hallsworth and Mark Egan Behavioral Development Economics By Syon Bhanot and Aishwarya Deshpande Why Governments Should Treat Cybersecurity the Way They Do Infectious Diseases By Karen Renaud and Stephen Flowerday Pour One Out for Nudge’s Forgotten Peers By Jesse Dashefsky Helping Parents Follow Through By Nadav Klein, Keri Lintz, Ariel Kalil, and Susan E. Mayer Week 3 A New Model for Integrating Behavioral Science and Design By Sarah Reid and Ruth Schmidt Applying Behavioral Science Upstream in the Policy Design Process By Kate Phillips Lessons in “Nudging” From the Developing World By Abigail Goodnow Dalton Choice Architecture 2.0: How People Interpret and Make Sense of Nudges By Job Krijnen What the Origins of the “1 in 5” Statistic Teaches Us About Sexual Assault Policy By Alexandra Rutherford BONUS Nudge Turns 10: A Q&A With Cass Sunstein By Elizabeth Weingarten Nudge Turns 10: A Q&A With Ricard Thaler By Evan Nesterak
This report discusses the use and reach of behavioural insights, drawing on a comprehensive collection of over 100 applications across the world and policy sectors.
But to be effective, nudges should be calibrated; “one size fits all” approaches tend to fall short of expectations. Instead, policymakers can tailor their nudges to align with these three dimensions: Spectrums of acceptability (and deviance). How strictly must targets adhere to the rule? While driving a couple of miles over the speed limit is unlikely to result in a traffic violation, attempting to bring a weapon onto an airplane requires zero-tolerance enforcement. Frequency of action. How often must the target group provide input? It may be easier to have targets make a single decision to contribute or obey, as opposed to encouraging them to repeatedly make the same decision over time. For example, people usually only need to choose to be an organ donor once, but drivers put their seat belt on every time they get into a car. Target group diversity. How heterogeneous is your target group? People may come from different socioeconomic backgrounds, have different interests, or may speak another language, all of which makes it challenging to apply a blanket rule with universal success. Moreover, targets can be geographically scattered or online, making it difficult for policymakers to surveil the target group. For example, all vehicle owners must register their cars, but not everyone should seek the same preventative medical treatments. And even those that do require similar treatments may have different motivations for doing so.
Our work published this week analyses all 111 cases studies of behavioral techniques used by governments compiled by the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development). Our analysis demonstrates that none of the techniques used have scientific proven effectiveness.
The table below provides guidance for thinking through when specific policy tools are useful and when choice architecture or nudging can be used to complement or enhance a particular strategy.
How-to for govts to set up a nudge unit
PSI identified several breakdowns in the health marketplace. These included government policies that created financial incentives leading providers to push sterilization over other forms of family planning, policies that created disincentives for private companies to develop the domestic market, and a lack of training among health care providers on all of the available birth control methods.
But you have to get System 1 onside in the first place. Decisions have three big levers – in branding, in politics, in anything else. We call them Fame, Feeling & Fluency. Does a choice come to mind easily (Fame)? Then it’s a good choice. Does a choice feel good? (Feeling) Then it’s a good choice. Is a choice easy to recognise and understand? (Fluency) Then it’s a good choice.
Results of Social and Behavioral Sciences Team's Nudges
UK initiative designed to embed robust evidence at the heart of local and national policymaking
framing, democrats, republicans