Nudgespotting

Nudgespotting: Getting Active in D.C.

BY: ANTONIA VIOLANTE (IDEAS42)

Almost everyone appreciates the benefits of exercise, especially when it's time to make New Year’s resolutions. But incorporating exercise into your busy schedule isn’t always as easy as it looks on the Lulu Lemon commercials. In fact, in 2015 only 20.9% of adults over 18 met the federal physical activity guidelines. Even when we do intend to exercise, we often find ourselves feeling like it’s not worth the trouble or being tempted into a happy hour instead.

The good news is behavioral science can help. Here are some Washington, D.C. behavioral science insights in action that have helped others -- and myself -- get active.

Nudgespotting: #NudgeTheVote

BY: LYDIA TRUPE (IDEAS42)

As you may have heard, there is an election coming up. Cable news, social media, and water cooler chatter have all been dominated by political discussion and debate. However, all of this apparent excitement and intention to vote may not necessarily translate into high levels of voter registration and turnout on Election Day. People may forget to register by their state deadline, or the hassle of filling out and sending registration paperwork may cause them to put it off indefinitely. Even those who have gone through the effort of registering to vote may not show up on Election Day if they have not planned enough time into their day to wait in the long lines at polling places. Campaigns, civic engagement groups, civic-minded organizations, and even private companies are using strategies informed by behavioral science to help overcome this intention-action gap and get people registered and to the polls. Here are three behaviorally informed examples of these strategies I’ve recently spotted.

Nudgespotting: Everyday Life in NYC

BY: DJ NERI (IDEAS42)

It’s impossible to live in New York City without experiencing the push and pull of influence. After all, one of NYC’s most famous destinations plants you in the center of an arena of advertisements. While some of these influences are merely annoyances or eyesores, others are more impactful. In this edition of Nudgespotting, I share four behavioral science insights in action from a typical day in the Big Apple.

Nudgespotting: An Investigation of Traffic Nudges

Nudgespotting: An Investigation of Traffic Nudges

By DJ Neri (ideas42)

Welcome back to Nudgespotting! Today we’ll take a look at several attempts to make you a better driver and discover how creating a “simple” nudge can be a not-so-simple task. 

 

Recently, on a trip to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, I was running late for a meeting. My taxi driver came to an abrupt halt at a red light and my eyes anxiously darted to the clock on my phone: how long would I be forced to wait? As if my mind had been read, I looked up to see that next to the red light was a timer displaying the seconds remaining until the light would turn green. I was immediately pleased to have my uncertainty alleviated, but later on I started wondering: are these timers nudging us to become better drivers? Or are they causing us to misbehave? Let’s investigate.