Essential Reads

Are Women Better Managers Than Men?

In the study, female managers outperform male on employee engagement scores.

The Advantage of Quitting

The sunk cost fallacy

10 Tips to Change From Reactive to Proactive in Situations

10 Ways to Be Less Reactive in Difficult Situations

The Scarcity Mindset

How does being poor change the way we feel and think?

Recent Posts on Behavioral Economics

The Economy: Consumer Mastery Vs. Soaring Prices

Rather than to be felled by the recession, the American consumer has emerged empowered.

Why It's Never About Race

By Sam Sommers on April 18, 2011 in Science Of Small Talk
Last month, Brigham Young University suspended from its nationally ranked men's basketball team starting forward Brandon Davies. That a major college team would have cause to discipline one of its own was hardly shocking. But the nature of Davies' honor code violation: Reportedly, he was dismissed for having consensual sex with his girlfriend.

Not Enough Willpower? Use Your "Extended Will!"

By Meg Selig on April 18, 2011 in Changepower
Getting help is a terrific technique for boosting your willpower.

Is Addiction a Social Disease?

By Lynn Phillips on April 17, 2011 in Dream On
Does getting paid in millions get people hooked on an executive compensation high? Is addiction the most useful way to think about our craving for oil, or Wall Street’s compulsion to repackage bad loans in pursuit of profit? Is the very concept of addiction so addictive that we can’t stop using it, even when it isn’t the best metaphor for the job?

Cancer, Choice, Beer, and Fear

By David Ropeik on April 13, 2011 in How Risky Is It, Really?
Engaging in risky behavior voluntarily makes it feel less risky. It doesn't mean the risk goes down, though, only the fear. And THAT may raise your risk!

A Pro for Procrastination

Out for a stroll in Bozeman Montana in 1977 I had the idea for a popular press book. That book was released yesterday, a mere 33 years later. Is there anything good about this level of procrastination?

The lure of celebrity endorsements

Celebrity advertising works because Images of famous people stimulate areas of our brains involved in emotions. Turning off your brain's response may save you from making poor consumer choices.

The World's Largest Experiment in Human Behavior

Homo sapiens' sexual predilections have always been tough to nail down. Most people don't make merry love in shopping malls and public squares. We are loathe to share our intimate desires with neighbors or scientists.

Does Beauty Matter?

By Harry Beckwith J.D. on April 11, 2011 in Unthinking
It's in the eyes of the beholder, perhaps--but whatever our eyes do see as beautiful, why does it matter? A half-dozen lessons of a career trying to satisfy, and understand, that craving.

Do People Think Ethical Is Ineffective?

By Raj Raghunathan Ph.D. on April 11, 2011 in Sapient Nature
Findings show that although consumers voice strong support for the "green movement," they privately harbor misgivings about the effectiveness of green products and hence, are less likely to purchase them. Could the "ethical = less effective" belief generalize to the context of judging people as well, that is, do we assume that ethical people are less effective?

Clenching Your Fists Increases Willpower

By Matthew Hutson on April 10, 2011 in Psyched!
According to researchers in a new paper, “Steely muscles can lead to a steely resolve.”

Having to Pee Increases Willpower

By Matthew Hutson on April 10, 2011 in Psyched!
Next time you need to discuss something with your boss while not telling him off, or you’re headed to the candy store with a credit card, consider chugging some water beforehand. Your brain will thank your bladder.

Keeping Up, and Down, with the Joneses

By Sam Sommers on April 08, 2011 in Science Of Small Talk
I got a letter this week from my utility company. It included a colorful graph comparing my electricity use to that of my average neighbor. Turns out I use 3 percent less energy than the norm. This got me to thinking about the strategy behind sending out the information, and whether it could, under some circumstances, backfire...

Understanding Procrastination: A Birthday Blog

By Timothy A Pychyl Ph.D. on April 07, 2011 in Don't Delay
I hate doing this. I missed a birthday. March 24th marked the beginning of the fourth year for this Don't Delay blog. Birthdays are often a time for reflection, so here are a few of mine about my understanding of procrastination, then and now, with some criticisms, some kudos and a look to the year ahead.

What Do Singles Spend Their Money On?

By Bella DePaulo Ph.D. on April 07, 2011 in Living Single
What are single men, single women, and married couples really spending their money on? The Bureau of Labor Statistics gives us the goods.

The Great Divide: Working Moms Vs. Childless Women

By Susan Newman Ph.D. on April 06, 2011 in Singletons
As significant as the differences are between men and women in most workplaces, the biggest gap is between women with children and those without.

Living by the Bronze Rule

By Scott M. James Ph.D. on April 04, 2011 in Mind and Morals
How much would you pay to have someone killed?

Seven Tips For Making Better Decisions

By Harry Beckwith J.D. on March 31, 2011 in Unthinking
How can you help your group--even a twosome--make better decisions? And actually enjoy the process? It's all in your heads. Here are seven proven tips, the lessons of over 30 years of strategic planning.

The Last Bullying Frontier

By Guy Winch Ph.D. on March 31, 2011 in The Squeaky Wheel
Bullying of LGBT youth has received well deserved attention over past months and raised public awareness about every other societal manifestation of bullying-except one.

The North-South Real Estate Bias

By Matthew Hutson on March 31, 2011 in Psyched!
Billy Joel sang about his “uptown girl.” Jim Croce warned us about “bad, bad Leroy Brown,” who lived on the South Side of Chicago, “the baddest part of town.” In some cities, uptown is genuinely nicer than downtown, but might people have a general bias to prefer northern areas over southern in any city?