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Handbook of Behavioural Change and Public Policy

Edited by Holger Straßheim, Bielefeld University and Silke Beck, Helmholtz-Centre for Environmental Research – UFZ, Leipzig, Germany
Behavioural change has become a core issue of public policy. Behavioural instruments such as ‘nudging’ apply insights from behavioural economics and behavioural sciences, psychology and neurosciences across a broad range of policy areas. Behavioural insights teams and networks facilitate the global spread of behavioural public policies. Despite an ever-growing amount of literature, research has remained fragmented. This comprehensive Handbook unites interdisciplinary scholarship, with contributions critically assessing the state and direction of behavioural public policies, their normative implications and political consequences.
Extent: c 416 pp
Hardback Price: $255.00 Web: $229.50
Publication Date: May 2019
ISBN: 978 1 78536 784 7
Availability: Not yet published

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  • eISBN: 978 1 78536 785 4

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  • Politics and Public Policy
  • Public Administration and Management
Behavioural change has become a core issue of public policy in recent years. This comprehensive Handbook takes a multidisciplinary approach to examine the relationship between the two, exploring the ever-increasing analysis of behavioural change and the importance of ‘nudge’ in terms of public policy.

Uniting interdisciplinary scholarship, Holger Straßheim and Silke Beck have drawn together a wide variety of perspectives, allowing for the legal, political, economic and social aspects of behavioural change and public policy to be explored. Contributions by renowned experts critically assess the theories and conceptual developments from early experiments to recent strategies of behavioural public policy. Chapters also cover the proliferation and professionalization of these strategies in Europe and beyond, the application of behavioural insights and instruments across areas including health, sustainability, employment, pensions, development and taxation, and the normative ideas and political consequences of knowing and governing behaviour.

Political science and public policy scholars will find the inclusion of both critical and theory-driven research a vital tool, while policy-makers will appreciate the practical suggestions included in this Handbook.
Contributors include: A. Alemanno, C. Berndt, B. Bornemann, S. Botzem, P. Burger, E. Ciriolo, A.-M. Farrell, J. Feitsma, R. Graf, P. Guldborg Hansen, F. Hörisch, M. Howlett, R. Jones, F. Lebaron, L. Leone, R. Lepenies, K. Loer, M. Małecka, J. Pykett, M. Quigley, S. Rafael Almeida, S. Rawat, T. Schillemans, J. Sousa Lourenço, H. Straßheim, C.R. Sunstein, M. Tallacchini, J. Tosun, R. Tyers, A. van Aaken, R.K. Weaver, M.D. White, M. Whitehead, P.W. Zuidhof


1. Introduction
Holger Straßheim and Silke Beck

Part I Knowing and changing behaviour: the co-evolvement of behavioural science and behavioural public policy
2. Nudging Before the Nudge? Behavioural Traffic Safety Regulation and the Rise of Behavioural Economics
Rüdiger Graf

3. Economic expertise and public policy
Frédéric Lebaron

4. A Bibliometric Analysis of Behavioural Studies in Economics and Public Policy Journals
Stuti Rawat

5. The Concepts of Nudge and Nudging in Behavioural Public Policy
Pelle Guldborg Hansen

6. Matching Policy Tools & Their Targets: Beyond Nudges and Utility Maximization in Policy Design
Michael Howlett

Part II Nudging around the world: proliferation and professionalization
7. Nudging Around the World: A Critical Geography of the Behaviour Change Agenda
Mark Whitehead, Rhys Jones and Jessica Pykett

8. The application of behavioural insights to policy in Europe
Emanuele Ciriolo, Joana Sousa Lourenço and Sara Rafael Almeida

9. Behaviour Experts in Government. From Newcomers To Professionals?
Joram Feitsma and Thomas Schillemans

10. Nudge and the European Union
Alberto Alemanno

11. Nudging Citizens’ Knowledge in Knowledge-based EU – The case of breast cancer screening programmes and participatory rights in choice architectures
Luca Leone and Mariachiara Tallacchini

12. Behaviouralizing Europe: Behavioural Economics Enters EU Policy-making
Peter-Wim Zuidhof

Part III Behavioural insights and instruments in policy-making
13. The enzymatic effect of behavioural sciences – What about policy-maker’s expectations?
Kathrin Loer

14. The politics of nudge and framing behaviour change in health
Muireann Quigley and Anne-Maree Farrell

15. Nudging to sustainability? Critical reflections on nudging from a theoretically informed sustainability perspective
Basil Bornemann and Paul Burger

16. Encouraging longer working lives: A behavioural perspective
R. Kent Weaver

17. Behavioural economics and development policy
Christian Berndt

18. Steering the Behaviour of Young People: The EU’s Policy Approach to Promote Employment
Jale Tosun and Felix Hörisch

19. The Governance of Behavioural Taxation: Moralization and the New Modes of Tax Collection
Sebastian Botzem

Part IV The governance of behaviour: normative ideals, critical perspectives and Political consequences
20. Which Nudges Do People Like? A National Survey
Cass R. Sunstein

21. Constitutional Limits to Regulation-by-Nudging
Anne van Aaken

22. Nudging – Ethical and Political Dimensions of Choice Architectures
Mark D. White

23. Macro Libertarianism and Micro Paternalism: Governance in an age of nudging
Roger Tyers

24. Behaviour change: extralegal, apolitical, scientistic?
Robert Lepenies and Magdalena Malecka