Safeguarding democracy

A new challenge for behavioural economics

Many of the best known examples of everyday Behavioural Economics are about health, wealth and wellbeing. Not surprisingly, these three central aspects of our life feature in the subtitle of Thaler and Sunstein’s popular book on the discipline, Nudge. As they explain, we have many conflicting aspirations, and we’re not very good at weighing them up. We want to lose weight, but we also prefer snacking on a chocolate bar or crisps, rather than on a banana. We want to keep fit, but we also like to lie in in the morning rather than to go jogging. We look forward to a comfortable retirement and know we should save for it, but we also like spending money here and now. ….[READ]