Decision Science News

Can we design a better fuel economy label?

Decision Science News | May 3, 2017

Transportation contributes approximately 26 percent to greenhouse gas emissions. As a result, governments around the world are looking for ways to increase consumers’ use of fuel-efficient vehicles. One of the most straightforward ways to provide this information is in the form of labels. In the United States, the so-called Monroney sticker – named after an Oklahoma senator who sponsored a law to disclose more vehicle information to consumers – is the label required to be displayed in all new automobiles, which describes various fuel economy metrics.

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Alleviating poverty through trust

Decision Science News | April 25, 2017

More than 1.5 billion people live in extreme poverty worldwide, and even in the relatively wealthy US, 14 per cent live below the poverty line. People in poverty make more “myopic” or short-term decisions rather than forward-looking decisions that could improve their situations.

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How Trump’s budget proposals could impact millions of women

Decision Science News | March 17, 2017

Do cuts in President Donald Trump’s proposed budget hurt women more than men? Advocates for women’s issues say yes. Trump released a “blueprint” for the country’s 2018 budget on Thursday, which includes large increases in defense spending and immigration enforcement and cuts to programs including the Labor Department’s Senior Community Service Employment Program, and cuts in funding for National Historic Sites and the Department of Housing and Urban Development affordable housing programs.

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Two business-school professors discovered how to make both red and blue Americans care about Trump’s drastic budget cuts

Decision Science News | March 16, 2017

Professors Eric Johnson and Elke Weber of the Center for Decision Sciences show how the way that tradeoffs between benefits and costs of budget cuts are presented can drastically impact people's opinions on public policy. More specifically, when tradeoffs are framed in terms of understandable, personal, and concrete numbers, people disagree less. 

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Want To Know What Your Brain Does When It Hears A Question?

Decision Science News | February 21, 2017

What color is your house? After reading that question, what were you thinking about? The obvious answer is the color of your house. Though this exercise may seem ordinary, it has profound implications. The question momentarily hijacked your thought process and focused it entirely on your house or apartment. You didn’t consciously tell your brain to think about that; it just did so automatically. Questions are powerful. Not only does hearing a question affect what our brains do in that instant, it can also shape our future behavior.

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It's hard to affect policymakers with climate science information

Decision Science News | February 17, 2017

Exposure to climate models' predictions affects policymakers and climate negotiators less than the informed general public, a paper by Valentina Bosetti and co-authors assesses. But the right presentation format can improve forecasts' effectiveness Policymakers and climate negotiators tend to use scientific information in a very conservative way, hardly allowing it to dent their prior beliefs, according to an experiment conducted on a sample of 217 policymakers attending the Paris COP21 conference, more than half of them acting negotiators, including eight heads of delegations.

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Former Skeptics Can Be Your Best Spokespeople

Decision Science News | November 2, 2016

Social and behavioral scientists caution that you must be careful when you use the “convert communicator” tactic. If the converts bash their own group too much, they lose persuasive powers and credibility. They must hold on to some essence of their original group identity while revealing this specific decision is about not being able to align that identity with this particular candidate.

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Why Americans show the asymmetry in adopting energy conservation?

Decision Science News | November 2, 2016


Professor Elke Weber and co-authors Shahzeen Attari and David Krantz studied factors "affecting the adoption of personal energy conservation behaviors and endorsement of energy conservation goals proposed for others." Two internet surveys show asymmetrical responses between goals for self and others. One possible explanation for the asymmetry is

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How Trump and Clinton Could Still Draw Undecideds off the Sidelines

Decision Science News | October 26, 2016

 Eric Johnson is a member of a group known as the Consortium of Behavioral Scientists, an association of academics bringing insights from the field of behavioral science to the campaign trail.

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Elke Weber gives a keynote at the FUR Conference

Decision Science News | June 29, 2016

Elke Weber of CDS and CRED gave a keynote at the Foundations of Utility and Risk (FUR) Conference at the University of Warwick, UK."



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