The Next Big Thing In Design? Less Choice Recently, I decided to buy Monopoly to play with my son. What I was sure would be a quick decision on Amazon turned into a learning experience for both of us. Did … Continue reading The tyranny of choice
Testing the Waters: Using Simple, Low-cost Nudges to Reduce Water Consumption With a six-fold increase in global water use over the last century, the availability of fresh water has emerged as a critical issue for environmental sustainability. Water scarcity is … Continue reading Using social norms for water conservation
God Can Help Companies Turn Customers Into Daredevils God is often portrayed as a benevolent father figure, or a protective force. But how about a different image of God: the marketing force? New research shows that when consumers are presented … Continue reading Advertising with God
When criminal law meets neuroscience Transformative technology marks the progress of humanity. It also inevitably raises questions. Just think of all the issues the spread of the Internet has raised, from net neutrality to anonymous harassment to search privacy. Not all of the issues are negative, of course, as exemplified by the question all non-profits are now asking themselves: how can we replicate the fundraising success of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge? One sector of technology innovation that doesn’t get much attention in the media, but seems poised to make game-changing strides, is neuroscience and its applications for criminal and … Continue reading Brain sciences are also for judges
The End of Asymmetric Information Might the age of asymmetric information – for better or worse – be over? Market institutions are rapidly evolving to a situation where very often the buyer and the seller have roughly equal knowledge. Technological developments are giving everyone who wants it access to the very best information when it comes to product quality, worker performance, matches to friends and partners, and the nature of financial transactions, among many other areas. These developments will have implications for how markets work, how much consumers benefit, and also economic policy and the law. As we will see, … Continue reading Did technology eliminate asymmetric information?
The Feel-Good Switch: The Radical Future of Emotion For most of the last century, the study of emotions was not considered serious science. The problem was subjectivity. Science is objective, rigorously objective. Emotions, though, are internal states, so the only way to study them is through subjective inference (essentially asking people to report how they feel). But — because people lie, because we often misinterpret our emotions and because comparisons between subjects, that is the depth of my anger versus your anger, is impossible to measure—there’s no objective data to be found. Thus, until recently, the topic was taboo. ….[READ] Continue reading What is the Emotion Economy?
From “Economic Man” to Behavioral Economics When we make decisions, we make mistakes. We all know this from personal experience, of course. But just in case we didn’t, a seemingly unending stream of experimental evidence in recent years has documented the human penchant for error. This line of research—dubbed heuristics and biases, although you may be more familiar with its offshoot, behavioral economics—has become the dominant academic approach to understanding decisions. Its practitioners have had a major influence on business, government, and financial markets. Their books—Predictably Irrational; Thinking, Fast and Slow; and Nudge, to name three of the most important—have … Continue reading How much popular is behavioral economics?