A Government of Social and Behavioral “Nudges”

Politically Short

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On September 15, 2015, Barack Obama signed an Executive Order with the intent on implementing “Behavioral Science Insights to Better Serve the American People.” The Executive Order (EO) is based on a “growing body of evidence demonstrating that behavioral science insights — research findings from fields such as behavioral economics and psychology about how people make decisions and act on them — can be used to design government policies to better serve the American people.”

Furthermore, the EO continues, “Where Federal policies have been designed to reflect behavioral science insights, they have substantially improved outcomes for the individuals, families, communities, and businesses those policies serve. For example, automatic enrollment and automatic escalation in retirement savings plans have made it easier to save for the future, and have helped Americans accumulate billions of dollars in additional retirement savings. Similarly, streamlining the application process for Federal financial aid has made college more financially accessible…

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