Behavioural economics

Behavioural microeconomics


How to build a Net Zero society

Other authors
Kristina Londakova, Izzy Brennan, Andrew Schein, Jake Reynolds, Ed Whincup, Edwin Chan, Marcos Pelenur, David Halpern
Tackling climate change is not only a moral and legal obligation in the UK, but is also the growth opportunity of the 21st century, and is backed by huge public support. This report builds on several years’ research and dozens of case studies across the...

Strengthening spirit and culture

This report builds the evidence base for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men’s healing programs. It promotes the benefits of men and boys reconnecting with cultural values and shows clearly that government investment in Aboriginal community-led men’s healing and behaviour change programs delivers better healing...

Improving energy bills: final report

The report applies behavioural insights to the design of energy bills. It will inform the Australian Energy Regulator’s development of a new, 'Better Bills Guideline', in order to simplify energy bills so consumers can better understand and manage their energy usage and costs and find...

The Method

The Method is being published chapter-by-chapter via the Monash Bridges/Figshare platform over 2021. The aim the guide is to clearly explain the thinking behind the resource, and provide instructions on how specific tools within it can be used to design better behaviour change programs.

Retirement planning, saving and attitudes: survey report

This report informed the work of the 2020 Retirement Income Review, by presenting results from an online survey about retirement planning, saving and attitudes.

Promoting compliance through behavioural insights

This report looks at how behavioural insights techniques could be applied to reduce costs and barriers to access for employers and employees who use the Fair Work Commission’s services, and improve overall compliance with unfair dismissal and enterprise agreement lodgment requirements.

Understanding our political nature

The aim of this report is to bring insights from the behavioural sciences, social sciences and humanities to update our picture of human political behaviour. This understanding will then hopefully provide solid foundations to improve policymaking, enabling scientific evidence and reason to contribute to democracy.

Behavioral science around the world: profiles of 10 countries

As more and more policymakers become interested in establishing behavioral insights units, this report provides some useful background on how others have made it work in a variety of country and government contexts, and the projects that have been particularly successful.

Applying behavioural insights to labour markets

This report looks at the available evidence and draws out the broader insights learned from the work that BIT and others have done in this space, with an eye to what is practical and universal. Its objective is to give policymakers and researchers around the...

Quantifying kindness, public engagement and place: experiences of people in the UK and Ireland

This report presents findings from the first ever quantitative survey on kindness in communities and public services. The data reveals a reassuring and yet complex picture of kindness in the UK and Ireland, with generally high levels of kindness reported, but at the same time...

Behavioural government: using behavioural science to improve how governments make decisions

Governments are increasingly using behavioural insights to design, enhance and reassess their policies and services. This report explores how this happens – and how any bias can be addressed or mitigated. To do this, this report focuses on three core activities of policymaking: noticing, deliberating...

How to increase voluntary participation in justice programs

This report aims to identify key behavioural drivers and barriers for engaging in voluntary, behaviour-based offender programs and to understand the behavioural characteristics and experiences of unsupervised offenders and what impacts their motivation and likelihood to engage in future support.
Working paper

Nudging businesses to pay their taxes: does timing matter?

This paper provides theoretical and empirical evidence on the implications of the timing of reminders by studying the effect of varying the timing of reminder letters to taxpayers on their payment behavior. The collection of unpaid tax debts constitutes a considerable challenge for tax authorities...

The Behavioural Insights Unit report: 2018

This report showcases the BIU's major projects since the last report in 2016, and sets out some of the lessons learned along the way.
Working paper

Higher education choice-making in the United States: freedom, inequality, legitimation

This paper examines the process of making higher education choices in the United States – whether to enter higher education, attend a particular college, or follow a particular route through college. It draws on research findings in the sociology of education, behavioural economics, and cognitive...

Energy labels that make cents: testing energy rating labels on appliances sold online

BETA joined forces with the Department of the Environment and Energy and Appliances Online to see if we could encourage consumers to buy more energy‑efficient appliances—helping them to save money.
Journal article

Using behavioural insights for citizen compliance and cooperation

This review takes two contrasting areas where behavioural insights have been used: tax collection where government policy is compulsory (i.e. requiring compliance), and energy use where social objectives are non-compulsory, and achieved more by persuasion and encouragement.

People-centred policy: through behavioural insights, design thinking and better use of data

The Policy Project collaborated with the Government Economics Network (GEN) committee to facilitate workshops following the 2016 GEN conference on ‘People and Policy – how to make better and smarter policies through behavioural insights, design thinking and better use of data’. This document records:

Behavioural Insights in NSW: update report 2016

This report provides an update of policy achievements in New South Wales that draw on the Behavioural Insights (BI) approach. BI draws on the behavioural sciences to help us understand how people act and make decisions in everyday life — ways that are often different...
Working paper

Behavioural insights of tax compliance: an overview of recent conceptual and empirical approaches

Many tax policies in Australia and comparable countries are based on a completely rational individual decision maker. However, recent evidence in the fields often referred to as behavioural insights (combining behavioural economics and psychology) have shown that people are neither completely rational not completely irrational...

Behavioural approaches to increasing workforce diversity

This document focuses only on behavioural interventions, not structural changes or policies, such as flexible working arrangements, return-to-work options, cadetships and targeted positions.

Applying behavioural insights to return to work

It is widely recognised that long-term absence from work is harmful to physical and mental wellbeing. Returning safely and quickly to work has strong benefits for the individual, their family, employer and the broader sustainability of the workers compensation system. In March 2013, the Department...
Briefing paper

What is tax salience?

Tax salience is a relatively new field of economic research, which emphasises that the way in which taxes are displayed can affect how they influence the economy. In particular, it emphasises that people are more likely to change their behaviour in response to highly visible...

Understanding people, better outcomes: Behavioural Insights in NSW

This report highlights the work of the NSW Behavioural Insights Unit (BIU) in the years 2012-2014.

Investing in our young people: Akaupokotuanga i ta tatou mapu no te au tuatau ki mua

Although most young people engage in positive life activities and become healthy adults, some become involved in risky behaviours. This has long been a concern for families, health professionals, policy makers and academics. Despite considerable research and the construction of a range of theories and...