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The ethics of nudge

Bovens, Luc (2009) The ethics of nudge. In: Grüne-Yanoff, Till and Hansson, Sven Ove, (eds.) Preference Change: Approaches From Philosophy, Economics and Psychology. Theory and decision library A (42). Springer Berlin / Heidelberg, pp. 207-219. ISBN 9789048125920

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Identification Number: 10.1007/978-90-481-2593-7_10


In their recently published book Nudge (2008) Richard H. Thaler and Cass R. Sunstein (T&S) defend a position labelled as ‘libertarian paternalism’. Their thinking appeals to both the right and the left of the political spectrum, as evidenced by the bedfellows they keep on either side of the Atlantic. In the US, they have advised Barack Obama, while, in the UK, they were welcomed with open arms by the David Cameron's camp (Chakrabortty 2008). I will consider the following questions. What is Nudge? How is it different from social advertisement? Does Nudge induce genuine preference change? Does Nudge build moral character? Is there a moral difference between the use of Nudge as opposed to subliminal images to reach policy objectives? And what are the moral constraints on Nudge?

Item Type: Book Section
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2009 Springer Science + Business Media B.V.
Divisions: Philosophy, Logic and Scientific Method
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > B Philosophy (General)
Date Deposited: 27 Jun 2011 12:48
Last Modified: 16 May 2024 05:19

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