Why do we often think we know what we want, only to be disappointed with our purchases and choices? Behavioral economics shows just how irrational humans can be. Here's insight into the surprising ways in which our emotions and thought patterns guide us toward predictable economic decisions.

Recent posts on Behavioral Economics

How Long Does Public Empathy Last After a Natural Disaster?

By Utpal Dholakia on September 24, 2017 in The Science Behind Behavior
The empathy of bystanders peaks quickly, and within a few weeks, it has abated to baseline levels.

How Brands Addict Us

By Douglas Van Praet on September 24, 2017 in Unconscious Branding
Brands are built to let you down and leave you wanting more

Anxiety Is a Leadership Tool

By Kirby Farrell Ph.D. on September 24, 2017 in A Swim in Denial
Since leaders use anxiety as a tool to motivate and control their followers, train yourself to recognize anxiety cues.

Born Good?

Economists, taking altruism seriously, find mixed evidence parents model it for their young children, stronger evidence that young kids are impressionable in this domain.

Authentic or Disingenuous?

By Harold Sigall Ph.D. on September 19, 2017 in Wishful Thoughts
How are you deciding whether others are sincere? Are you being misled?

De-crazifying Crypto, Part II: An Open Letter to Wall Street

By Moses Ma on September 19, 2017 in The Tao of Innovation
Bitcoin may end up a bubble, but the total market cap for all blockchain ventures in a decade could be in the hundreds of billions. So focus on blockchains, not bitcoins.
Chengwei Liu

The Winner Shouldn't Take It All

By Chengwei Liu Ph.D. on September 18, 2017 in Decisions Defined
The winner shouldn't take it all because many of them are simply the luckiest.

iPhone X: Yes Or No?

By Susan Weinschenk Ph.D. on September 16, 2017 in Brain Wise
Whether or not you buy the new iPhone X depends in part on whether you are making a habit based decision or a value based decision.

Changes in Coverage Threaten Mental Health Parity

Children with mental illness require regular monitoring and behavior management. Now, insurance companies and legislation threaten equitable access to mental health treatment.
By Martin Ransohoff (http://web.poptower.com/tyrel-ventura.htm) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Explaining Delusional Thinking

By Shahram Heshmat Ph.D. on September 15, 2017 in Science of Choice
The dual-process framework of decision-making can provide some insights into the theory of delusional belief.

The Shrinking Breast Fashion

By Nigel Barber Ph.D. on September 14, 2017 in The Human Beast
Women seeking breast augmentation are opting for smaller sizes than previously. Why the change?

Obverse Psychology: A Better Response to Know-It-Alls

By Jeremy E Sherman Ph.D. on September 12, 2017 in Ambigamy
How to respond to someone who reverses or deflects every challenge, always claiming the "correct" side of the coin for themselves? You expose how we're all dealing with both sides.

Can Too Much Information Increase the Risk of Drunk Driving?

By Romeo Vitelli Ph.D. on September 12, 2017 in Media Spotlight
How effective are public service announcements in persuading people not to drive when they are impaired? The results of a new study may surprise you.
University of Chicago Journals

The Power of Watching Yourself Eat

By Peter A. Ubel M.D. on September 11, 2017 in Scientocracy
Making ourselves self-conscious about our food choices can help us reduce temptations by making those temptations less tempting.

3 Tips to Donate Effectively After a Natural Disaster

By Utpal Dholakia on September 10, 2017 in The Science Behind Behavior
Giving cash, staggering donations, and vetting the charities you give to will ensure your donation has a greater impact.

The Root of All Hypocrisy

By Jeremy E Sherman Ph.D. on September 08, 2017 in Ambigamy
In a pinch, we pull out bogus one-size-fits-all moral rules that we can't, won't, and shouldn't try to live by.

Assessing Trust

By Judith E. Glaser on September 07, 2017 in Conversational Intelligence
Few managers and leaders understand how vital and intelligent quality conversations and interviews are to the health and productivity of a company’s culture.

Game of Cheating

By Joachim I Krueger Ph.D. on September 07, 2017 in One Among Many
When you cheat, know what you can get away with and whether your conscience will trouble you.

Upscale “Shop ‘til You Drop” is for Poor Extraverts

By Kevin Bennett on September 05, 2017 in Modern Minds
Why do low-income extraverts spend more on "high status" luxury goods compared to low-income introverts? New research shows how status-shopping interacts with personality.

Recognition Is Easy, So Why Do We Make It So Hard?

By Victor Lipman on September 05, 2017 in Mind of the Manager
Employee recognition is a fundamental but often overlooked aspect of management. It's common for employees to feel their best efforts are routinely ignored.

Neither Ghost Nor Machine: The Emergence and Nature of Us

By Jeremy E Sherman Ph.D. on September 02, 2017 in Ambigamy
The biggest gap in psychology finally filled, an explanation for why things matter to you but not to your computer, bed or car.
Shuttershock

Does Having Too Much Money Make Us Stupid ?

By Peter A. Ubel M.D. on September 01, 2017 in Scientocracy
The quality of our decisions hinges in part on our ability and inclination to consider the trade-offs.

Honest, Hard Work

By The Research Lab on September 01, 2017 in The Fundamentals
Celebrating the miracle of honest labor. By John Doggett, J.D.

The Five Stages of (Financial) Change

By Sarah C. Newcomb Ph.D. on August 31, 2017 in Loaded
Are you stopping yourself because you don't see progress? You may be further along than you think.

Wealthy Is as Wealthy Feels

By Nigel Barber Ph.D. on August 30, 2017 in The Human Beast
How satisfied people are with their lifestyle has almost nothing to do with objective realities and everything to do with where they see themselves in the pecking order.

I Read the News, Therefore I Am (Prejudiced)

Are you really getting the news when you flick and click?

The Many Ways We Lie to Ourselves

By Shahram Heshmat Ph.D. on August 29, 2017 in Science of Choice
Everyone is in denial about something.

These Colors Make Products Look Bigger

By Mark Travers Ph.D. on August 29, 2017 in General Intelligence
New research explores the connection between product color and perceived size.

Backfirebrands

By Jeremy E Sherman Ph.D. on August 28, 2017 in Ambigamy
Hate is not the answer. Neither is love. Love is the question, what to love, a question you won't get to if you pretend that you're simply loving.
Eva Rinaldi/Wikimedia Commons

The Role of Motivation in Delusional Belief

By Shahram Heshmat Ph.D. on August 27, 2017 in Science of Choice
Motivated delusions can have psychological benefits that might lead both to the formation or maintenance of delusions.