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The future of behavioral insights: on the importance of socially situated nudges


Socially minded nudges are the more sociable cousin of regular nudges: they reveal important information about other people's behavior, raise normative expectations about what is desirable, can be shared and transmitted online or offline and leverage social incentives and sanctions that regulate individual and group behavior. In this article, I argue that many of the most successful nudges – that is, nudges that have been well replicated, offer positive spill-over and whose effects last over time – have in fact been social nudges. Moreover, the efficacy of other nudges can be enhanced by considering the social dimension of the problem that they are trying to address. In asking where behavioral science should go next, I argue that although the Behavioural Insights Team has traditionally shied away from addressing more complex and sticky societal issues, socially situated nudges are particularly well suited to address many of the important challenges raised by Sanders et al. (2018).

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Behavioural Public Policy
  • ISSN: 2398-063X
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