Environmental Sustainability

Honoring Black Behavioral Scientists and Examining the Psychology of Race in History

by ideas42

People often (erroneously) believe that a few leaders are responsible for the development of an emerging field, an idea, or event in history because of perceived “natural attributes” such as superior intelligence. This is known as “great man” theory–a flawed theory, of course, because in reality it is the tireless work of countless people that […]

University College London Nudgeathon: Can We Hit Refresh on our Domestic Travel Habits in Light of COVID-19?

by Sanjeev Devarajan, Nudgeathon events team, UCL BIT

With the importance of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and COVID-19 reducing aviation numbers dramatically, the current moment is seen as a unique chance to shift business travelling behaviour towards more sustainable choices. On Friday 4th December, University College London’s (UCL) Behavioural Innovations Team launched a Nudgeathon, a unique event built around sharing ideas and developing […]

Our Top Behavioral Science Highlights of the Year (Goodbye, 2020)

by ideas42

It’s become tradition of sorts that each December, we reflect on the year behind us and celebrate the newest evidence and social impact generated by behavioral science. Of course, 2020 is a difficult year to look back on with much fondness. And yet, even in one of the more challenging years in living memory, we […]

Ethical Machine Learning

by ideas42

  Applied together, it is fair to say that machine learning and behavioral science have the potential to significantly magnify social impact. Yet, as machine learning algorithms become more prevalent in the systems people use to make important decisions, there is deep, and not unfounded, concern that algorithms – even those designed with social impact […]

ideas42 Stands for Racial Justice

by ideas42

We are disgusted by the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery. We are angry about the ongoing racism faced by Black people. This anger is not new in the US, as Black Americans have faced a long history of racist violence driven not by a few bad actors, but by systemic racism […]

Tackling the Great Smog in India

by Preeti Anand

  Every year, during the months of October and November, India’s National Capital Region (NCR) is engulfed in unusually thick layers of smog that disrupt day-to-day life. The area effectively slows to a crawl, with intermittent school closures, flight disruptions, construction bans, restricted driving rules and city-wide water sprinkling all commonplace. Outdoor activities are replaced […]

13 Ways Behavioral Science Improved Lives in 2019

by ideas42

  Each year, the behavioral science community expands our knowledge about humans and decision-making and builds evidence for how to use behavioral science to improve lives. This rapidly growing community is made up of brilliant researchers, dedicated practitioners who apply behavioral science in their work solving problems, pioneering organizations that fund behavioral innovation around the […]

Behavioral Science Can Help More Consumers Bank Sustainably

by Griffin Smith

The global financial system provides the fuel which feeds the fires of climate change, Bill McKibben recently argued in The New Yorker. McKibben highlights the key role of banks, asset managers, and insurance companies in funding the extractive ventures of fossil fuel giants. The scale is stunning: in the three years since the Paris Agreement […]

Social Norms for Social Good: 3 Insights to Apply

by Liana Johnson

Social norms are a powerful tool for improving lives—they have helped people get healthier, save more money, and take positive environmental actions. While social norms sound simple—“tell people what others are doing and they’ll change their behavior!”—there are plenty of nuances to leveraging them for social good. Apply these three insights to optimize your social […]