Every day we make countless decisions, from the small, mundane things to tackling life's big questions, but we don't always make the right choices. Behavioural scientist Dr David Halpern heads up Number 10's 'Nudge Unit', the world's first government institution that uses behavioural economics to examine and influence human behaviour, to 'nudge' us into making better decisions. Seemingly small and subtle solutions have led to huge improvements across tax, healthcare, pensions, employment, crime reduction, energy conservation and economic growth. Adding a crucial line to a tax reminder brought forward millions in extra revenue; refocusing the questions asked at the job centre helped an extra 10 per cent of people come off their benefits and back into work; prompting people to become organ donors while paying for their car tax added an extra 100,000 donors to the register in a single year. After two years and dozens of experiments in behavioural science, the results are undeniable. And now David Halpern and the Nudge Unit will help you to make better choices and improve your life.
Dr David Halpern is currently Chief Executive of the Behavioural Insights Team (BIT) and the UK's National Adviser on What Works. Prior to this, David was Chief Analyst in the Prime Minister's Strategy Unit (2001-2007), and has held academic positions at the Universities of Cambridge, Oxford and Harvard. The work of BIT has led to numerous changes in government policy - from different ways of spending and saving money, to changes in regulation and legislation - and above all, to remarkable results.