Behavioral Economics: Policy Impact and Future Directions

Report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine: “Behavioral economics – a field based in collaborations among economists and psychologists – focuses on integrating a nuanced understanding of behavior into models of decision-making. Since the mid-20th century, this growing field has produced research in numerous domains and has influenced policymaking, research, and marketing. However, little has been done to assess these contributions and review evidence of their use in the policy arena.

Behavioral Economics: Policy Impact and Future Directions examines the evidence for behavioral economics and its application in six public policy domains: health, retirement benefits, climate change, social safety net benefits, climate change, education, and criminal justice. The report concludes that the principles of behavioral economics are indispensable for the design of policy and recommends integrating behavioral specialists into policy development within government units. In addition, the report calls for strengthening research methodology and identifies research priorities for building on the accomplishments of the field to date…(More)”.