Udayan Roy

Behavioral Economics

How Economists Can Be Just as Irrational as the Rest of Us By Neil irwin, The Upshot (blog), The New York Times, September 4, 2015. [When sending out a list of items to a large number of people, make sure each item has the same chance of being placed in a particular place in the list.]

Rules versus Discretion: Insights from Behavioral Economics BY MARK CALABRIA, Alt-M (blog), AUGUST 7, 2015. []

Brain Chemicals Explain the Power of Placebos By PATRICIA CHURCHLAND, The Wall Street Journal, Aug. 5, 2015. [How chemicals made in our brains reduce pain]

Easy Ways to Fix Government By Cass R. Sunstein, BloombergView, July 27, 2015. [Britain's Behavioural Insights Team has been a success.]

You can trick yourself into being happy ... if you make life worse first By Oliver Burkeman, The Guardian, July 25, 2015. [On happiness and hedonic adaptation.]

Blame the nudge theory for your unbearably cute smoothie By Catherine Bennett, The Guardian, July 25, 2015. [Let's not try to oversell behavioral 'nudges'.]

Training for Neoliberalism By John McMahon, The Boston review, July 15, 2015. [Review of "Misbehaving" by Richard Thaler.]

Daniel Kahneman: ‘What would I eliminate if I had a magic wand? Overconfidence’ By David Shariatmadari, The Guardian, 18 July 2015. [The psychologist and bestselling author of Thinking, Fast and Slow reveals his new research and talks about prejudice, fleeing the Nazis, and how to hold an effective meeting.]

Behavioural Economics is Rational After All By Roger Farmer, Roger Farmer's Economic Window (blog), July 3, 2015. []

The psychology of saving By Tim Harford, The Undercover Economist (blog), June 30, 2015. [‘There is one dramatic success for behavioural economics — the way it has shaped pensions’.]

The Economics of George Orwell By Roger Farmer, Roger Farmer's Economic Window (blog), June 28, 2015. []

When America Says Yes to Government By CASS R. SUNSTEIN, The New York Times, JUNE 19, 2015. [Nudges are not politically divisive: Republicans and Democrats agree that soft interventions can help people meet their own goals with respect to health, safety and economic security. Americans might not like paternalism, but when they are asked about specific nudges, they tend to be supportive. And when they dislike some interventions — as they definitely do — Republicans and Democrats usually agree as well, suspecting that government has illegitimate goals, or that it is acting inconsistently with people’s interests or values.]

Why People Don’t Buy Long-Term-Care Insurance By OLIVIA S. MITCHELL AND DANIEL GOTTLIEB, The Wall Street Journal, June 14, 2015. [Study offers new insights on what keeps people from buying policies—and what insurers can do about it.]

How Your Emotions Get in the Way of Smart Investing By MEIR STATMAN, The Wall Street Journal, June 14, 2015. []

The Real Lesson of the Stanford Prison Experiment BY MARIA KONNIKOVA, The New Yorker, June 12, 2015. []

How the Poor Make Better Financial Decisions Than the Wealthy By Anuj Shah, Slate, June 10, 2015. [The poor outperform the rich at some financial decisions. Under poverty, people develop a unique expertise.]

Finance Has Caught On to Behavioral Economics By Noah Smith, BloombergView, June 9, 2015. []

The Anti-Poverty Experiment By JASON ZWEIG, The Wall Street Journal, June 5, 2015. [In the U.S. and abroad, a new generation of data-driven programs is testing ways to help the poor to save more, live better and find their own way to economic security.]

A Little Psychology Does Economics Some Good By Noah Smith, BloombergView, June 1, 2015. []

The Science of Scarcity by Cara Feinberg, Harvard Magazine, May-June 2015. [Discussion of the ideas in "Scarcity: Why Having Too Little Means So Much" by Sendhil Mullainathan and Eldar Shafir.]

Unless You Are Spock, Irrelevant Things Matter in Economic Behavior By Richard H. Thaler, The Upshot (blog), The New York Times, May 8, 2015. [Richard Thaler explains why tests should be out of 137 points rather than the usual 100.]

Classroom peer pressure: A mixed blessing By Emily Cuddy and Richard V. Reeves, Social Mobility memos (blog), Brookings, March 20, 2015. []

Illinois Introduces Automatic Retirement Savings Program, a First for the Nation By Josh Barro, The Upshot (blog), The New York Times, January 5, 2015. []

Rethinking One of Psychology's Most Infamous Experiments By CARI ROMM, The Atlantic, JAN 28 2015. [In the 1960s, Stanley Milgram's electric-shock studies showed that people will obey even the most abhorrent of orders. But recently, researchers have begin to question his conclusions—and offer some of their own.]

How to Make Yourself Go to the Gym By Josh Barro, The Upshot (blog), The New York Times, January 10, 2015. [The answer: commitment contracts. But don't expect your gym to help with that; their business plan depends on you buying a membership but not going.]

Racial Bias, Even When We Have Good Intentions By SENDHIL MULLAINATHAN, The Upshot (blog), The New York Times, January 3, 2015. [Unconscious bigotry!]

Nudge, or Shove? By Sreven Teles, The American Interest, December 10, 2014. [Review of "Why Nudge? The Politics of Libertarian Paternalism" by Cass R. Sunstein.]

An Economist Goes Christmas Shopping By Josh Barro, The Upshot (blog), The New York Times, December 19, 2014. [Just give cash? You are not a behavioral economist, then.]

How the Brain Uses Glucose to Fuel Self-Control By Robert M. Sapolsky, The Wall Street Journal, December 3, 2014. [The brain requires tons of energy—and new experiments show how low glucose levels and self-control issues are connected.]

Poor behaviour The Economist, December 6, 2014. [Behavioural economics meets development policy.]

The Secret to Resisting Temptation By ANN LUKITS, The Wall Street Journal, Nov. 24, 2014. [People Who Excel at Resisting Temptation Deliberately Avoid Tempting Situations, Says a Study. Stay away from situations in which the thing that tempts you is easily available.]

Can Money Buy You Happiness? By ANDREW BLACKMAN, The Wall Street Journal, November 10, 2014. [It depends on what we do with the money. Spend it doing things for others. Spend it to buy spare time and new experiences.]

To Exercise More, Sign a Contract By ANN LUKITS, The Wall Street Journal, Nov. 10, 2014. [Workers Who Made a Written Commitment to Be More Active Spent Significantly Less Time Sitting.]

That Devil on Your Shoulder Likes to Sleep In By MATT RICHTEL, The New York Times, NOV. 1, 2014. [Morality can get tired.]

The Struggles of a Psychologist Studying Self-Control BY MARIA KONNIKOVA, The New Yorker, October 9, 2014. [Profile of Walter Mischel, the psychologist behind the marshmallow test of self-control.]

The psychology of torture by Malcolm Harris, aeon, October 7, 2014. [The Milgram experiments showed that anybody could be capable of torture when obeying an authority. Are they still valid?]

Not so foolish by Steven Poole, aeon, September 22, 2014. [We are told that we are an irrational tangle of biases, to be nudged any which way. Does this claim stand to reason?]

Book Review: 'The Marshmallow Test' by Walter Mischel By MICHAEL SHERMER, The Wall Street Journal, September 19, 2014. [Book review of "The Marshmallow Test" by Walter Mischel.]

Learning How to Exert Self-Control By Pamela Druckerman, The New York Times, September 12, 2014. [The marshmallow experiment and self control.]

Using Gambling to Entice Low-Income Families to Save By PATRICIA COHEN, The New York Times, AUG. 30, 2014. [Using psychology to encourage saving.]

Donors Give More When They Have a Sense of Belonging By Robert J. Shiller, The New York Times, July 5, 2014. [Charities now have a chance to look at some new organizational paths to giving, some of which have benefited from research in behavioral economics.]

A Nudge to Save a Bit More By Ron Lieber, The New York Times, June 27, 2014. [For Retirement, Online Tools Can Encourage Greater Saving.]

No Money, No Time By MARIA KONNIKOVA, The Opinionator (blog), The New York Times, JUNE 13, 2014. [The different facets of scarcity.]

Gambling and self-deception: Hot to trot The Economist, May 10, 2014. [Lucky streaks happen. But they are not the result of luck.]

Our Nudge in Chief By David Cole, The Atlantic, May 2014, available online on April 16, 2014. [How, and why, Cass Sunstein believes laws and public policies should help save us from our irrational impulses.]

Behavioural economics and public policy By Tim Harford, The Financial Times, March 21, 2014. ["As with any success story", says Tim Harford, "the backlash [against behavioral economics] has begun."]

Monkey See, Monkey Do— Just Like You By ROBERT M. SAPOLSKY, The Wall Street Journal, February 28, 2014. [Studies of birds and primates show psychology of peer pressure is widespread.]

The market for paternalism: Nudge unit leaves kludge unit Free Exchange (blog), The Economist, February 7, 2014. [The British Government's Behavioral Insights Team is becoming an independent entity.]

The Rationality Debate, Simmering in Stockholm By ROBERT J. SHILLER, The New York Times, January 18, 2014. [Three winners of the 2013 Nobel in economics have varying takes on the assumption that people are rational.]

Playing the Odds on Saving By TINA ROSENBERG, The New York Times, January 15, 2014. [Lotteries may be a way to encourage people to save.]

More Rational Resolutions By ANGELA CHEN, The Wall Street Journal, December 30, 2013. [To Reach Goals, Be More Logical and Take a Scientific View of Your Emotions.]

An economist’s guide to gift-giving by Ezra Klein, Wonkblog (blog), The Washington Post, December 25, 2013. [Should your gifts be in cash or in kind?]

Uber and the Macro Wars by Paul Krugman, The Conscience of a Liberal (blog), The New York Times, December 21, 2013. [Of taxi fares, wages, and recessions. Discussion of how notions of fairness affect pricing policies and how pricing policies affect the economy.]

Uber’s surge pricing is totally logical and fair. So why do people hate it so much? by Neil Irwin, Wonkblog (blog), The Washington Post, December 20, 2013. [Why is it that people accept surge pricing for movie tickets, holiday gifts and airplane tickets as a matter of course, yet the surge pricing for a luxury car service spurs such rage? It boils down to consumer psychology, especially loss aversion and instinctual notions of fairness.]

There’s Power in All Those User Reviews By MATT RICHTEL, The New York Times, Published: December 7, 2013. [A wealth of online product information is making it harder to influence consumers with traditional marketing methods, new research suggests.]

So Easy to Sign Up, and So Hard to Cancel By SENDHIL MULLAINATHAN, The New York Times, Published: December 7, 2013. [Competitive markets, like the one for cable service, retain annoying snags because people don’t always think before buying.]

Britain’s Ministry of Nudges By KATRIN BENNHOLD, The New York Times, Published: December 7, 2013. [Inspired by American behavioral economics, the British government is finding new ways to gently prod people to pay taxes, find jobs and insulate their homes. Here are further specifics on Britain's nudge unit.]

The Dirty Secret of Black Friday 'Discounts' By SUZANNE KAPNER, The Wall Street Journal, November 25, 2013. [People generally have no idea what a commodity is worth to them. But they get excited when something is "50% Off". They like the idea of getting a deal.]

The Co-Villains Behind Obesity’s Rise By SENDHIL MULLAINATHAN, The New York Times, Published: November 9, 2013. [A behavioral economist reminds himself that biology is also a part of the nation’s weight problem.]

Psyching Us Out: The Promises of ‘Priming’ By GARY GUTTING, Opinionator (blog), The New York Times, October 31, 2013. ['Priming' experiments often show that human reason is highly susceptible to suggestion, but do the results have any real meaning outside the lab?]

Interview with Richard Thaler By Douglas Clement, The Region, October 3, 2013 . [University of Chicago behavioral economist on stock markets, NFL drafts and the importance of trust.]

Eugene Fama, King of Predictable Markets By JEFF SOMMER, The New York Times, Published: October 26, 2013. [An interview with the economist — and, now, Nobel laureate — who’s known as the father of the efficient-markets theory.]

Sharing Nobel Honors, and Agreeing to Disagree By ROBERT J. SHILLER, The New York Times, Published: October 26, 2013. [A winner of this year’s Nobel in economics explains areas of disagreement with his fellow laureates. And, he notes, this isn’t the first time co-recipients have had differing views.]

Book Review: 'The Map and the Territory,' by Alan Greenspan By Burton G. Malkiel, The Wall Street Journal, October 21, 2013. [Alan Greenspan argues that Wall Street didn't predict the 2008 crisis because it paid scant attention to the insights of behavioral economics.]

Robert Shiller: A Skeptic and a Nobel Winner By JEFF SOMMER, The New York Times, Published: October 19, 2013. [The Yale professor and winner of the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics for 2013 talks about the forces that made him a questioning, data-driven economist, and what made him look to psychology for answers.]

Glimpses of Shiller, Through the Years By DAVID LEONHARDT, Economix (blog), The New York Times, October 15, 2013. [More on Robert Shiller, who pioneered behavioral finance, and received the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics for his work.]

Robert Shiller: ‘When I look around I see a lot of foolishness, and I can’t believe it’s not important economically’ By Neil Irwin, Wonkblog (blog), The Washington Post, Published: October 15, 2013. [One of the pioneers of behavioral finance wins the Nobel Memorial Prize in economics, and swings a sledgehammer (politely!) at his co-winners, Eugene Fama and Lars Hansen, who swear by the efficient markets hypothesis.]

The Mental Strain of Making Do With Less By SENDHIL MULLAINATHAN, The New York Times, Published: September 21, 2013. [The constant distraction of restricting calorie intake strains the mental capacity of dieters; in a similar way, poverty is a strain on the poor.]

Being poor changes your thinking about everything By Harold Pollack, Wonkblog (blog), The Washington Post, Published: September 13, 2013. [Interview with Sendhil Mullainathan, a Harvard behavioral economist, about the new book "Scarcity: Why Having Too Little Means So Much" by Sendhil Mullainathan and Eldar Shafir.]

It Captures Your Mind By Cass R. Sunstein, The New York Review of Books, September 26, 2013. [Review of "Scarcity: Why Having Too Little Means So Much" by Sendhil Mullainathan and Eldar Shafir.]

Hard-Wired for Giving By ELIZABETH SVOBODA, The Wall Street Journal, August 30, 2013. [Contrary to conventional wisdom that humans are essentially selfish, scientists are finding that the brain is built for generosity.]

The psychology of scarcity: Days late, dollars short The Economist, August 31, 2013. [Those with too little have a lot on their mind. Poverty impairs both a human being's IQ and will power, thereby driving him/her deeper into poverty, and so on and on.]

Public Policies, Made to Fit People By RICHARD H. THALER, The New York Times, August 24, 2013. [A new White House initiative is intended to involve social and behavioral scientists in policy making.]

Prospect theory and economics: Future prospects By C.W., Free Exchange (blog), The Economist, August 5, 2013. [Prospect theory has actually influenced the study of finance—and it can explain some of the central puzzles of how markets work.]

Breadwinning Wives and Nervous Husbands By RICHARD H. THALER, The New York Times, JUNE 1, 2013. [Economists who assume rationality in people would think that rising earnings of one spouse could only make the other spouse happier. Wrong!]

The debt to pleasure The Economist, April 27, 2013. [Daniel McFadden, a winner of the economics Nobel, argues for an overhaul of the theory of consumer choice along the lines suggested by psychology.]

Former Obama Regulator on the Future of Government The Wall Street Journal, April 9, 2013. [Former Obama administrator Cass Sunstein talks to WSJ's Rolfe Winkler about soda bans, freedom of choice and his new book, "Simple: The Future of Government," in this latest video in The Big Interview series.]

Shifting Our Retirement Savings Into Automatic By RICHARD H. THALER, The New York Times, Published: April 6, 2013. [To help Americans save more, retirement plans should make good choices easier. Automatic enrollment is a start.]

Three Cheers for the Nanny State By SARAH CONLY, The New York Times, Published: March 24, 2013. [Give me a 32-ounce soda or give me death! Seriously?]

It’s For Your Own Good! By Cass R. Sunstein, The New York Review of Books, March 7, 2013. [Reveiew of "Against Autonomy: Justifying Coercive Paternalism" by Sarah Conly, Cambridge University Press, 206 pp., $95.00.]

Power of Suggestion By Tom Bartlett, The Chronicle of Higher Education, January 30, 2013. [The amazing influence of unconscious cues is among the most fascinating discoveries of our time­—that is, if it's true.]

Beware Stubby Glasses By DAVID BROOKS, The New York Times, Published: January 10, 2013. [A weighty new book is an acknowledgement of the need for public policy to pay more attention to behavioral research. Just waiting on the politicians.]

Your Own Private Fiscal Cliff By DEAN KARLAN, The Wall Street Journal, January 9, 2013. [The idea of committing one's future self to something dates back to Homer's Odyssey.]

Suffer. Spend. Repeat. By OLIVER BURKEMAN, The New York Times, Published: December 8, 2012. [Holiday shopping is designed to make you uncomfortable. Because shoppers spend more when they are uncomfortable. Marketing pros know that consumer behavior is about a lot more than prices and budget constraints.]

Holiday Shopping Tips From Behavioral Economists By Cass R. Sunstein, bloomberg.com, Nov 27, 2012.

Why is housing such a popular investment? A new psychological explanation By Thomas Alexander Stephens, Jean-Robert Tyran, Vox, 23 November 2012. [Despite its meagre real returns in the long run, many people still think that investing in housing is a good idea. This column argues that a major reason for the tendency to buy houses is that it’s rare to lose money. Recent research shows people’s perceptions of housing transactions to be shaped by whether they gain or lose money – above and beyond the real returns.]

Happiness may bring you more money, study says By Amina Khan, Los Angeles Times, November 19, 2012. [Young people who express more positive emotions tend to have higher incomes by the time they're 29, a Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences study says.]

Academic ‘Dream Team’ Helped Obama’s Effort By BENEDICT CAREY, The New York Times, Published: November 12, 2012. [A team of social scientists -- including behavioral economists -- gave advice on how to counter rumors, portray rivals effectively and get out the vote.]

Study examines poverty and the allotment of resources By Amina Khan, Los Angeles Times, November 3, 2012. [A study in the journal Science by a behavioral economist offers this insight: No matter who you are, having severely limited funds alters the way you make decisions about using them.]

‘Framing’ Prevents Needed Stimulus By ROBERT J. SHILLER, The New York Times, Published: September 1, 2012. [If state and local governments had not cut back so much, the broader economy would be stronger today. So why did they do what they did?]

Beware the Nocebo Effect By PAUL ENCK and WINFRIED HÄUSER, The New York Times, Published: August 10, 2012. ["When a patient anticipates a pill’s possible side effects, he can suffer them even if the pill is fake."]

Robert Shiller on Behavioral Economics By Social Science Bites (blog), Published: August 1, 2012. [A Yale economics professor and a pioneer of behavioral economics gives a broad introduction to the subject: audio and transcript.]

Mental Accounting and the Microfoundations Wars By Paul Krugman, The Conscience of a Liberal (blog), The New York Times, July 22, 2012. [The way people make choices at the gas pump makes no economic sense.]

Why We're Driven to Trade By Jason Zweig, The Wall Street Journal, July 21, 2012. [People with normal brains are quick to predict future returns from recent performance. Those with brain damage, more sensibly, rely only on more extensive evidence.]

When Bad Theories Happen to Good Scientists By Matt Ridley, The Wall Street Journal, July 21, 2012. [Most scientists "not only become strongly attached to their own theories; they perpetually look for evidence that supports rather than challenges their theories."]

Watching Behavior Before Writing the Rules By RICHARD H. THALER, The New York Times, Published: July 7, 2012. [When it comes to forming government policy, lawyers and economists have great influence. But in Britain, behavioral scientists are gaining a seat at the table, too.]

Oxytocin: The Moral Molecule The Leonard Lopate Show,WNYC, Monday, May 14, 2012. [Paul Zak tells us about oxytocin, a chemical messenger that accounts for why some people are generous, trustworthy, and faithful and others aren’t. His book The Moral Molecule: The Source of Love and Prosperity looks at decades of research on what oxytocin is and how it works.]

How Dutch Dollhouse Mania Explains the U.S. Housing Bust By Michelle Chihara, Bloomber View, May 22, 2012. [The Dutch Golden Age of the seventeenth century saw the birth of modern speculative asset-market activity. Like the tulip craze, there was also a dollhouse craze with adults going crazy over dollhouses!]

Answering a Question About an Airport Bathroom By MICHAEL POLLAK, The New York Times, Published: June 15, 2012. [Why is there an image of a housefly in some urinals at Kennedy Airport?]

Forget the Money, Follow the Sacredness By JONATHAN HAIDT, Campaign Stops (blog), The New York Times, Published: March 17, 2012. [Political choices are not driven by self interest. We evolved to be tribal, and politics is a competition among coalitions of tribes.]

Treating Depression: Is there a placebo effect? By Leslie Stahl, 60 Minutes, CBS News, February 19, 2012. [The annual $11.3 billion anti-depressant industry may be based on a total fraud. Prof. Irving Kirsh of Harvard says that anti-depressants are no better than placebos for the vast majority of depressed people.]

Gym-Pact Fines You for Not Exercising By TARA SIEGEL BERNARD, The New York Times, Bucks blog, January 2, 2012. [A new service called Gym-Pact tries to motivate users to get to the gym, and fines people who don't. Gym-goers collect cash if they meet their commitments. "The idea was born after Ms. Yifan Zhang (who founded Gym-Pact), an economics major, took a class in behavioral economics."]

The Behavioral Economist's Guide to Buying Presents By Jordan Weissmann, The Atlantic, December 14, 2011. [Worried about what to buy for for your loved ones this holiday season? Here's what researchers have to say about what makes a good gift.]

For Creative People, Cheating Comes More Easily by Alix Spiegel, NPR, December 5, 2011. [Transcript of a report on "All Things Considered," a radio program broadcast on December 5, 2011 on National Public Radio. The report discusses the following paper: Gino, F., & Ariely, D. (2011, November 28). "The Dark Side of Creativity: Original Thinkers Can Be More Dishonest." Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1037/a0026406.]

The King of Human Error by Michael Lewis, Vanity Fair, December 2011. [A profile of Daniel Kahneman, a psychologist who won the Nobel memorial prize in economics for being one of the founders of behavioral economics, on the occasion of the publication of his recent book "Thinking, Fast and Slow."]

Two Brains Running By JIM HOLT, The New York Times, November 27, 2011. [Review of Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman.]

The Neuroeconomics Revolution By Robert J. Shiller, Project Syndicate, November 21, 2011.

Nudge thyself by Stephen Cave, Financial Times, November 18, 2011. [This is a review of three recent books that take aim at behavioral economics -- arguing essentially that it does not go far enough in rejecting traditional economics -- from three vantage points: biology, neuroscience, and sociology.]

Decision time: How subtle forces shape your choices By Kate Douglas, New Scientist, November 14, 2011. [Gut instincts help us make tough decisions.]

Behavioral Economics Foils an Obama Tax Cut? By Drake Bennett, Bloomberg Businessweek, November 10, 2011. [New research finds that a trendy economic theory backfired on the Obama Administration. Or did it?]

The Anatomy of Influence By Evan R. Goldstein, The Chronicle of Higher Education, November 8, 2011. [Is Daniel Kahneman the most important social scientist of his generation?]

Thinking, Fast and Slow by William Easterly, The Financial Times, November 5, 2011. [Glowing review of "Thinking, Fast and Slow" by Daniel Kahneman, one of the founders of behavioral economics.]

The New Science Behind Your Spending Addiction by Sharon Begley and Jean Chatzky, Newsweek, October 30, 2011. [Neuroscience unveils how your brain is hard-wired when it comes to spending—and how you can reboot it.]

Are Optimists Dumber? by Sharon Begley, Newsweek, October 9, 2011. [A new study suggests that "unrealistic optimists" shut out information they don't want to hear. Indeed, a rosy outlook could be more like blissful ignorance. ]

Top Five Books on Behavioral Economics by Dan Ariely.

The Planning Fallacy By DAVID BROOKS, The New York Times, September 16, 2011. [The writer considers “the planning fallacy”, as described by Daniel Kahneman, one of the founders of behavioral economics, and draws a very broad -- and controversial -- conclusion about the effectiveness of government policy.]

The Sugary Secret of Self-Control By STEVEN PINKER, The New York Times, September 4, 2011. [Review of Willpower: Rediscovering the Greatest Human Strength By Roy F. Baumeister and John Tierney.]

Washington Should Try a Little Prudent Self-Restraint By Richard Thaler, The New York Times, August 28, 2011. [The behavioral economics of self-control may help politicians focus more on what's truly important.]

Do You Suffer From Decision Fatigue? By JOHN TIERNEY, The New York Times, Sunday Magazine, August 21, 2011. [The very act of making decisions depletes our ability to make them well. So how do we navigate a world of endless choice?]

The Unexamined Society By DAVID BROOKS, The New York Times, July 7, 2011. [Behavioral research helps us address problems holistically and design effective policies. It's the last thing that should be facing a slash in financing.]

How Online Companies Get You to Share More and Spend More by Dan Ariely, Wired, July 2011. [How e-businesses use the findings of behavioral economics to lure customers into spending money.

Harvard grads turn gym business model on its head; fitness plan members pay more if they don’t work out By Susan Johnston, Boston Globe, January 24, 2011. [Harvard students are using the ideas of behavioral economics to design a better type of gym membership that will help members stick to their exercise plans.]

Game Theory By BRUCE WEBER, The New York Times, January 27, 2011. [This is a review of "Scorecasting," a book in which a behavioral economist and a sportswriter take on some of the most cherished myths in sports.]

The Economics of Tiger Parenting By IAN AYRES, Freakonomics (blog), The New York Times, January 21, 2011, 12:00 PM.

Why a Budget Is Like a Diet — Ineffective By TARA SIEGEL BERNARD, The New York Times, December 31, 2010. [The battle, experts in behavioral finance say, is in finding ways to close the gap between good intentions and human nature.]

Greater Choice Doesn’t Make You Happy By CATHERINE RAMPELL, Economix (blog), The New York Times, November 12, 2010, 3:15 pm. [The more options you have, the less happy you are, at least if you’re a heavy TV watcher.]

Burgerville Offers Personalized Calorie Counts on Receipts, You Want Thighs With That? BY Ariel Schwartz, Fast Company, Tue May 18, 2010. [A good way to make calorie information stick. A brave way for a restaurant to help its customers make the right choices.]

Brains Like To Keep It Real, by Catherine Clabby, American Scientist, November-December 2010. [A neuroeconomist peers into the brain to see what makes us want to buy something.]

F.D.A. Unveils Proposed Graphic Warning Labels for Cigarette Packs, By GARDINER HARRIS, The New York Times, November 10, 2010. [Designed to cover half the surface area of a pack, new proposed labels are meant to vividly remind smokers of tobacco’s dangers. An excellent example of libertarian paternalism, if you are prepared to ignore the infringement of the cigarette companies' liberty.]

The Opt-Out Solution By TINA ROSENBERG, The Opinionator (blog), The New York Times, November 1, 2010, 8:15 pm. [How behavioral economics can be used to encourage people to save more, donate their organs (upon their death, of course), and get tested for AIDS. ] Readers' reactions!

Nudge the Vote, By SASHA ISSENBERG, The New York Times, October 29, 2010. [What’s even better than getting Lady Gaga to play your Election Day rally? Sending out a mailing that applies a subtle dose of peer pressure.]

Microscopic Microeconomics, By JONAH LEHRER, The New York Times, October 29, 2010. [Can neuroscience predict financial bubbles?]

Later by James Surowiecki, The New Yorker, October 11, 2010. [What does procrastination tell us about ourselves? This is a review of The Thief of Time: Philosophical Essays on Procrastination edited by Chrisoula Andreou and Mark D. White, Oxford University Press, 2010, ISBN: 9780195376685.]

Missouri Tells Judges Cost of Sentences, By MONICA DAVEY, The New York Times, September 18, 2010. [Judges in Missouri, in a hotly debated practice, are now told how much each type of sentence costs. Is this a useful nudge? Or will it pollute justice with issues that should be irrelevant?]

The Overconfidence Problem in Forecasting, By RICHARD H. THALER, The New York Times, August 21, 2010. [Big company CFOs are spectacularly bad at predicting the stock market. And CEOs are way too confident of their own abilities. What's worse is that big companies may be using a CEO selection procedure that favors these overconfident doofuses.]

Your Card Has Been Declined, Just as You Wanted, By RON LIEBER, The New York Times, August 13, 2010. [We keep getting into trouble because we have no willpower. But there are ways of protecting ourselves from ourselves. Also, on this theme, check out www.stickk.com/.]

Economics Behaving Badly, By GEORGE LOEWENSTEIN and PETER UBEL, The New York Times, July 15, 2010. [The limits of what psychology can tell us about choices.]

What We Miss, By PAUL BLOOM, The New York Times, June 6, 2010.

What We Misunderstand, By KYLA DUNN, The New York Times, June 6, 2010.

The Impact of the Irrelevant on Decision-Making , By ROBERT H. FRANK, The New York Times, May 28, 2010.

You've been framed, The Economist, May 27, 2010. [Consumers are suckers for “special” deals that are costlier than they first appear]

Video: here. {Excellent introduction to the debate over the nature of human behavior and its implications for economics between traditional economists and behavioral economists.]

Using Psychology To Save You From Yourself by Alix Spiegel, "All Things Considered," National Public Radio, June 8, 2009.

Training the Brain To Choose Wisely, By VANESSA FUHRMANS, Wall Street Journal, April 28, 2009

It Doesn’t Have To Hurt: Government should use the lessons of behavioral economics to get us to invest more for retirement, By Richard Thaler, NEWSWEEK, Apr 20, 2009

How Obama Is Using the Science of Change, By Michael Grunwald, Time, Apr. 02, 2009

The New Paternalism: An economist and a legal scholar argue that policy makers should nudge people into making good decisions, By EVAN R. GOLDSTEIN, The Chronicle of Higher Education, May 9, 2008

Testosterone May Fuel Stock-Market Success, Or Make Traders Tipsy, By ROBERT LEE HOTZ, THE WALL STREET JOURNAL, April 18, 2008.

Lured Toward the Right Choice, By Barbara Kiviat, Time, April 03, 2008. [Review of Nudge by Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein]

Emonomics, By DAVID BERREBY, The New York Times, March 16, 2008 [Review of Predictably Irrational by Dan Ariely]

What Was I Thinking?, by Elizabeth Kolbert, The New Yorker, February 25, 2008. [The latest reasoning about our irrational ways. Review of Predictably Irrational by Dan Ariely]

Grape expectations: What wine can tell us about the nature of reality, By Jonah Lehrer, Boston Globe, February 24, 2008.

Charting the Agony Of a Brain as It Struggles to Be Fair, By ROBERT LEE HOTZ, THE WALL STREET JOURNAL, October 12, 2007.

Who’s Minding the Mind?, By BENEDICT CAREY, The New York Times, July 31, 2007.

Neuroeconomics: Money isn't everything, The Economist, July 5th 2007. [Men with a lot of testosterone make curious economic choices.]

Sometimes, What’s Needed Is a Nudge, By DAVID LEONHARDT, The New York Times, May 16, 2007.

Your Plate Is Bigger Than Your Stomach, By DAVID LEONHARDT, The New York Times, May 2, 2007.

The Survival of the Fattest, by Cass R. Sunstein & Richard H. Thaler, The New Republic, Issue date: 03.19.07 [Review of Mindless Eating: Why We Eat More Than We Think By Brian Wansink]

Lotto Makes Sense, Even for Losers, By BENEDICT CAREY, The New York Times, March 11, 2007.

Helping People Help Themselves, By TERESA TRITCH, The New York Times, February 14, 2007.

When mañana is too soon: A psychologist in Calgary thinks he knows why we procrastinate, by Kurt Kleiner, The Toronto Star, Jan 14, 2007.

Why say no to free money? It's neuro-economics, stupid, By Mark Henderson, The Times, London, October 07, 2006. [Studies show how the brain lets the emotions override common sense when reaching some tough decisions. Our correspondent reports on the 'ultimatum game']

The Herd Changes Course and Runs Away From S.U.V.’s, By ROBERT H. FRANK, The New York Times, August 3, 2006.

The Marketplace of Perceptions, by Craig Lambert, Harvard Magazine, March-April 2006. [Behavioral economics explains why we procrastinate, buy, borrow, and grab chocolate on the spur of the moment.]

The aggro of the agora, The Economist, Jan 12th 2006. [Consumers fail to measure up to economists' expectations.]

Pensions by default, The Economist, August 25th 2005. [Behavioural finance offers a tempting alternative to voluntary and forced saving for old age.]

Scaring Us Senseless, By NASSIM NICHOLAS TALEB, The New York Times, July 24, 2005.

Monkey Business, By STEPHEN J. DUBNER and STEVEN D. LEVITT, The New York Times Magazine, June 5, 2005. [Keith Chen's Monkey Research.]

Why Logic Often Takes A Backseat, By Peter Coy, BusinessWeek, MARCH 28, 2005. [The study of neuroeconomics may topple the notion of rational decision-making.]

Can behavioral economics save us from ourselves? by Sharla A. Stewart, University of Chicago Magazine, February 2005. [Traditional economics holds that humans, as rational beings, make choices to maximize their welfare. Chicago’s Richard Thaler argues that policy makers—including those working on President Bush’s plan to partially privatize Social Security—would do well to remember that rationality has its bounds.]

Mind games, The Economist, Jan 13th 2005 [Can studying the human brain revolutionise economics?]

The Dry Goods Frenzy, Updated, By TRACIE ROZHON, The New York Times, December 5, 2004.

As Two Economists Debate Markets, The Tide Shifts: Belief in Efficient Valuation Yields Ground to Role Of Irrational Investors, By JON E. HILSENRATH, THE WALL STREET JOURNAL, October 18, 2004.

The evolution of everyday life, The Economist, Aug 12th 2004. [Co-operation has brought the human race a long way in a staggeringly short time.]

Mind Reading, By Jerry Adler, Newsweek, July 5, 2004 [The new science of decision making. It's not as rational as you think. Another version: August 9, 2004.]

To have and to hold, The Economist, Aug 28th 2003. [Can people learn to be as rational as economic theory supposes?]

How Much Does It Cost Not to Go to the Gym?, By DAVID LEONHARDT, The New York Times, July 6, 2003.

When Emotions Guide Investors, By HAL R. VARIAN, The New York Times, July 3, 2003.

Calculating the Irrational in Economics, By STEPHEN J. DUBNER, The New York Times, June 28, 2003.

Brain Experts Now Follow the Money, By SANDRA BLAKESLEE, The New York Times, June 17, 2003.

Prospect Theory, By DIRK OLIN, The New York Times, June 8, 2003.

Behaviourists at the gates, The Economist, May 8th 2003. [How economists are using psychology to question orthodox policy prescriptions]

Nobel Winner: Investors Can't Beat Market, By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS, The New York Times, January 1, 2003.

Explaining the Irrational, By Julie Diop, Technology Review, November 2002.

How a Tax on Cigarettes Can Help The Taxed, By DAVID LEONHARDT, The New York Times, April 14, 2002.

Investor Behavior Plays Role in Debate Over Wider Choice in 40l(k)'s, By HAL R. VARIAN, The New York Times, February 14, 2002.

The Compromise Effect. . . And the New Thinking About Money Is That Your Irrationality Is Predictable, By Steven Pearlstein, Washington Post, Sunday, January 27, 2002.

Some Funds Try to Read Your Mind, By ELIZABETH HARRIS, The New York Times, AUG 19, 2001.

The Outlook, by Steven Lipin, The Wall Street Journal, June 18, 2001.

Economic Scene: Pentagon Shows That It Doesn't Always Pay to Take the Money and Run, By ALAN B. KRUEGER, The New York Times, May 24, 2001.

Putting a Human Face on Economics, By Charles J. Whalen, BUSINESSWEEK ONLINE : JULY 31, 2000.

IRRATIONALITY: Rethinking thinking The Economist, December 16th 1999. [Economists are starting to abandon their assumption that humans behave rationally, and instead are finally coming to grips with the crazy, mixed up creatures we really are.]