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Nudging with information: a randomized field experiment on reminders and feedback

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Author Info

  • Calzolari, Giacomo
  • Nardotto, Mattia

Abstract

Can people be helped to stick to their plans with a little help from information? We provide a theoretical and empirical analysis of the effects of reminders and feedback on investment activities involving up-front costs and delayed benefits, such as education and healthy behavior. By means of a randomized field experiment, we show that simple weekly reminders induce users of a gym to substantially increase their levels of physical exercise. We show that limited attention helps explain our results, and we find evidence of mental accounting in users' response to the stimulus of reminders. These results show that virtuous behavior, such as following a healthy life style, can be promoted without the need for monetary incentives: providing incentives through information is both effective and cheap.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 8571.

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Date of creation: Sep 2011
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:8571

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Related research

Keywords: feedback; inattention; limited memory; mental accounting; randomized field experiment; reminders; sunk cost;

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  1. Dean Karlan & Sendhil Mullainathan & Margaret McConnell & Jonathan Zinman, 2010. "Getting to theTop of Mind: How Reminders Increase Saving," Working Papers id:2587, eSocialSciences.
  2. Sandeep Baliga & Jeffrey C. Ely, 2011. "Mnemonomics: The Sunk Cost Fallacy as a Memory Kludge," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 3(4), pages 35-67, November.
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Cited by:
  1. Steffen Altmann & Christian Traxler, 2012. "Nudges at the Dentist," Working Paper Series of the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods 2012_15, Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods.

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