Though that's not the intent of the book. It shows how "choice architects" should do their jobs for the benefit of all. Where their techniques are used, everyone seems to benefit. But they can also be abused, hence my headline..
Most choices are made by procrastination (i.e. not at all) or by what other people are doing (belonging). Choices can be structured in such a way that defaults that are best for the chooser are easiest (i.e. if you don't choose, this is what you get). People are still free to make their own choices, if they think they know better, or if they want freedom of choice. Applied to saving for retirement: default is you get a salary deduction that is considered generally appropriate for your age and average retirement goals. You are free to choose something more conservative or risky. Most will accept the default and be better off than had they done no retirement investing at all (a poor default) or had made choices without being very well informed.
Although the authors address the issue of not enough organ donors, there is actually an even better suggested method than their own - which comes from Seth Godin (and writing partner, sorry forgot the name). That is, your priority for an organ should be based on your length of time on the donor list. That policy would see so many people become donors, for their own self-preservation, as to have a surplus (based on actual need). Why are we not doing this?
And, as indicated, these techniques are also being abused, against us. We want to feel part of everything, so if someone is doing something, we feel the need to do it, too. Signalling Virtue, for example. I certainly do not like to be manipulated, and when the choice architecture is not fully transparent, that's what's happening.
- Paperback: 320 pages
- Publisher: Penguin Books; Updated edition (Feb. 24 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 9780143115267
- ISBN-13: 978-0143115267
- ASIN: 014311526X
- Product Dimensions: 14 x 2.1 x 21.3 cm
- Shipping Weight: 240 g
- Customer Reviews: 637 customer ratings
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #5,547 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- See Complete Table of Contents
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