3 November 2017

ZSEM Business Insights: Does Public Policy Need Behavioral Economics?

Does Public Policy Need Behavioral Economics? This year’s Nobel Prize in Economics was awarded to Richard Thaler in the field of Behavioral Economics, a new interdisciplinary research field that enriches the economy through insights from psychology and neuroscience. Thaler has introduced concepts such as the endowment effect and mental accounting into the science of making decisions, which represent an important contribution to our understanding of the behavior of individuals which deviates from the assumptions described in economic literature as homo oeconomicus. Thaler is also the father of a new paradigm in the design of effective economic policies – so-called libertarian paternalism with the help of which we can use the systematic irrationality of individuals to encourage them to bring about better economic, financial and healthcare decisions for themselves. Behavioral economics has thus become the main ally for evidence-based policy-makers and its power has been recognized by politicians who often among them behavioral economists (so-called nudge teams).

At the Zagreb School of Economics and Management, behavioral economics has been taught continuously since 2013, both in Croatian and English, in the spring and the summer school sessions. It was the most popular course in the Summer School program, attended by students from more than 30 countries. The course is taught by a tandem of an economical psychologist and an economist: Andrijana Mušura, PhD in Mental Accounting, and Vedrana Pribičević PhD in research of economic networks within ecophysics. In the lecture you will have the opportunity to enter the world of behavioral economics and its application in solving real economic problems. The lecture (in Croatian) will take place in the Franck Superiore Hall, 15-16.30 h.  The entrance is free!