Kudos to the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences for their selection of Richard Thaler for the 2017 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences.
In making the selection, the chairman of the prize committee cited Thaler’s broad “contributions and discoveries” in behavioral economics, and how he helped take the field from “being sort of a fringe and somewhat controversial part of economics to being a mainstream area of contemporary economic research.”
While that is undeniably important, we would, however, point to the more actionable aspects of his work. Many of our clients have come to us with a hope of informing and improving public policy, for example, and on that topic Thaler’s work has been a revelation. In his book, Nudge, Thaler brings to life the way in which people make decisions, and the role of policy in shaping those decisions.
Click here to view a “Big Think” interview with Dr. Thaler explaining nudges, or visit nudges.org for more examples.
So congratulations Dr. Thaler, and thank you for your insights and advice.