Nudging with Care: The Risks and Benefits of Social Information

Public Choice, Forthcoming

29 Pages Posted: 4 Feb 2019

See all articles by Cristina Bicchieri

Cristina Bicchieri

University of Pennsylvania

Eugen Dimant

University of Pennsylvania; CESifo

Date Written: January 20, 2019

Abstract

Norms and nudges are both popular types of interventions. Recent years have seen the rise of `norm-nudges' - nudges whose mechanism of action relies on social norms, providing or eliciting social expectations. Norm-nudges can be powerful interventions, but they can easily fail to be effective and can even backfire unless they are designed with care. We highlight important considerations when designing norm-nudges and discuss a general model of social behavior based on expectations and conditional preferences. We present the results of several experiments where norm-nudging can backfire, and ways to avoid these negative outcomes.

Keywords: Behavioral Economics, Norm-Nudges, Nudge, Social Information, Social Norms

JEL Classification: B41, D01, D9

Suggested Citation

Bicchieri, Cristina and Dimant, Eugen, Nudging with Care: The Risks and Benefits of Social Information (January 20, 2019). Public Choice, Forthcoming, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3321394

Cristina Bicchieri (Contact Author)

University of Pennsylvania ( email )

Philadelphia, PA 19104
United States
2158983023 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://https://upenn.academia.edu/CristinaBicchieri

Eugen Dimant

University of Pennsylvania ( email )

Philadelphia, PA 19104
United States

HOME PAGE: http://sites.google.com/view/eugendimant/

CESifo ( email )

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich
Germany

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