Tag Archives: nudges

Incentive to Stop Smoking?

In the United States, the FDA tried to mandate that cigarette companies put nasty images of the harms of smoking onto cigarette packages, images that would take up at least half of the carton. It looks like that effort has … Continue reading

Posted in Behavioral Economics and Public Policy | Tagged , ,

A Clever Way to Promote Recycling

Behavioral science has taught me that subtle environmental cues can have a surprisingly strong influence on people. I don’t know if the following cue was purposeful or not, but the relative size of these two receptacles – the blue one … Continue reading

Posted in Behavioral Economics and Public Policy | Tagged ,

The Growing Importance of Behavioral Economics in Retirement Saving Plans

Dick Thaler, an economist who helped create the field of behavioral economics, came up with a wonderful idea a long time ago to promote retirement savings, a plan he calls Save More Tomorrow. Among the many clever aspects of his … Continue reading

Posted in Behavioral Economics and Public Policy | Tagged ,

Squat for Your Subway Token: One of the Most Creative Nudges I've Encountered

This idea is so crazy it might just be the best one I’ve heard all week: a subway station in Moscow provides free tickets to commuters who stand in front of a monitor and squat or lunge 30 times. I … Continue reading

Posted in Behavioral Economics and Public Policy, Health & Well-being | Tagged , ,

Why James Bond Needs to Wear Condoms

Think of the last few times you watched a popular movie that involved any kind of sex scene? Not as in pornographic sex, but as in two characters ended up in bed together and had, ahem, conjugal relations. In how … Continue reading

Posted in Health & Well-being | Tagged , , ,

Would Tactics like the New York Soda Ban Work?

Although blocked for now, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s Soda Ban has many wondering what tactics could actually help consumers kick certain bad habits? Threats? Pricing? Bans? Graphic images? What actually works and what role should the government play? I … Continue reading

Posted in Health Policy | Tagged ,

Brain Control and Consumer Behavior

I teach a course on consumer irrationality and market failure at the Fuqua School of Business. I open up one of my lectures with a brief video demonstration of what psychologists call “the McGurk effect.” (See an example here.) In the video, … Continue reading

Posted in Behavioral Economics and Public Policy | Tagged , ,

Lifesaving Lessons from the Makers of Sprite?

It was the late 90s and HIV was spreading through South African teenagers like, well, like a sexually transmitted disease. Sleep with a South African at that time and you faced a one in six chance of having a close … Continue reading

Posted in Health Policy | Tagged

New York's Soda Prohibition Won't Work

New York City’s plan to prohibit the sale of large, sugary soft drinks is a brave and provocative policy, one that promotes public health at minimal cost to New York City residents.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s announcement last week highlights the kind of tough regulatory action we, as a society, need to make to combat an obesity epidemic that experts say will cause this generation of elementary school children to be the first in centuries to experience a shorter life span than their parents.

Read more here Continue reading

Posted in Health Policy | Tagged , ,