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Latest Insights

Behavioral Science Ideas at Your Fingertips

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Words Matter for Life: How Language Can Influence Suicide Behavior

Languages influence perceptions and decision-making. We highlight one of the most important linguistic features – Future Time Reference. FTR impacts speakers’ behaviors involving intertemporal considerations, even the most critical decision on life – suicide.

By |2020-05-25T09:10:53+00:00May 25th, 2020|

Stop Chasing the Past: Improving Investment Decisions with Social Disclaimers

Mutual funds cannot consistently return better-than-average performance. Yet investors often pick their mutual funds based on past performance. Researchers Leonardo Weiss-Cohen, Philip Newall and Peter Ayton conducted a long-term Think Forward Initiative research project that sought to answer how their investment decisions could be improved.

By |2020-05-12T08:17:39+00:00May 8th, 2020|

No Data, No Drama: How Behavioral Science Can Help the Banking Industry

With most of its attention captured by the global fervor around 'big data', the banking industry has failed to give behavioral science the attention it deserves. I argue that, considering today’s challenges to fully take advantage of big data, implementing insights from behavioral science is a more cost-effective approach to improve customer experience in banking.

By |2020-04-21T15:06:06+00:00April 21st, 2020|

Behavioral Insights for Old Age Planning

It’s almost impossible to rationally plan old age, given that decisions in this domain are complex, jointly made and emotional. I argue that behavioral economics can help us understand some of our common decision-making barriers, such as dealing with decision avoidance, reframing old age positively, and designing interventions to better forecast our needs in old age.

By |2020-03-05T09:59:48+00:00March 4th, 2020|

Deceiving Yourself to Better Deceive Others

Most people are overconfident in various aspect of their daily life. Yet, this bias has been shown to have detrimental economic and financial consequences. In light of these costs, why is this bias so persistent in the population? Our research provides an explanation for this phenomenon: being overconfident can provide a strategic advantage by influencing others in social interactions.

By |2020-02-25T12:43:32+00:00February 25th, 2020|

Does “Irrationality” Travel?

As the enthusiasm for applied behavioural science spreads across the globe, it is time to think how well "irrationality" travels. This is the start of an article series exploring the impact of factors such as cultural context on decision making - and how our understanding of the human mind is based on a thin slice of humanity.

By |2020-02-20T17:29:53+00:00January 20th, 2020|

Exerting Self-Control ≠ Sacrificing Pleasure

In the typical self-control experiment, participants are given a choice between a hedonic vice-food (e.g., chocolate) and a utilitarian virtue-food (e.g., fruit). Choosing the hedonic vice is interpreted as a self-control failure. We argue that self-control failures are better captured as choices that violate one’s long-term goals and induce regret. Accordingly, the consumption of hedonic food is not necessarily a self-control failure, and self-control does not necessarily entail a trade-off between pleasure and health. Our conceptualization has far-reaching consequences for consumers and policy-makers who try to help consumers exert self-control.

By |2020-01-15T11:02:57+00:00December 4th, 2019|
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