Top Behavioral Economics Books

Behavioral economics is the study of people’s mindset and decision-making abilities, consequences, and eventually becoming either a wise or a bad habit.

By blending insights from psychology, cognitive science, and traditional economics, behavioral economics gives us a more complex and nuanced view into how we make decisions, and how we can help ourselves and others make better ones.

Here is the list of Top Behavioral Economics Books –

1. Happy Money: The Science Of Happier Spending By Elizabeth Dunn and Michael Norton

Two professors combine their fascinating and cutting-edge research in behavioral science to explain how money can buy happiness—if you follow five core principles of smart spending.
Most people recognize that they need professional advice on how to earn, save, and invest their money. When it comes to spending that money, most people just follow their intuitions. But scientific research shows that those intuitions are often wrong.

2. The Darwin Economy: Liberty, Competition, And The Common Good By Robert H. Frank

Who was the greater economist–Adam Smith or Charles Darwin? The question seems absurd. Darwin, after all, was a naturalist, not an economist. But Robert Frank, New York Times economics columnist and best-selling author of The Economic Naturalist, predicts that within the next century Darwin will unseat Smith as the intellectual founder of economics. The reason, Frank argues, is that Darwin’s understanding of competition describes economic reality far more accurately than Smith’s. And the consequences of this fact are profound. Indeed, the failure to recognize that we live in Darwin’s world rather than Smith’s is putting us all at risk by preventing us from seeing that competition alone will not solve our problems.

3. Influence: The Psychology Of Persuasion By Robert Cialdini

Influence, the classic book on persuasion, explains the psychology of why people say “yes”—and how to apply these understandings. Dr. Robert Cialdini is the seminal expert in the rapidly expanding field of influence and persuasion. His thirty-five years of rigorous, evidence-based research along with a three-year program of study on what moves people to change behavior has resulted in this highly acclaimed book.

4. Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, And Happiness By Richard H. Thaler and Cass R. Sunstein

Now, the authors have rewritten the book from cover to cover, making use of their experiences in and out of government over the past dozen years as well as an explosion of new research in numerous academic disciplines. To commit themselves to never undertaking this daunting task again, they are calling this the “final edition.” It offers a wealth of new insights, for both its avowed fans and newcomers to the field, about a wide variety of issues that we face in our daily lives—COVID-19, health, personal finance, retirement savings, credit card debt, home mortgages, medical care, organ donation, climate change, and “sludge” (paperwork and other nuisances we don’t want, and that keep us from getting what we do want)—all while honoring one of the cardinal rules of nudging: make it fun!

5. Scarcity: Why Having Too Little Means So Much By Sendhil Mullainathan and Eldar Shafir

A surprising and intriguing examination of how scarcity—and our flawed responses to it—shapes our lives, our society, and our culture

Drawing on cutting-edge research from behavioral science and economics, Mullainathan and Shafir show that scarcity creates a similar psychology for everyone struggling to manage with less than they need. Busy people fail to manage their time efficiently for the same reasons the poor and those maxed out on credit cards fail to manage their money.

6. Paradox Of Choice: Why More Is Less By Barry Schwartz

In the spirit of Alvin Tofflers’ Future Shock, a social critique of our obsession with choice, and how it contributes to anxiety, dissatisfaction and regret. Whether we’re buying a pair of jeans, ordering a cup of coffee, selecting a long-distance carrier, applying to college, choosing a doctor, or setting up a 401K, everyday decisions have become increasingly complex due to the overwhelming abundance of choice with which we are presented.

7. Thinking Fast And Slow By Daniel Kahneman

In the highly anticipated Thinking, Fast and Slow, Kahneman takes us on a groundbreaking tour of the mind and explains the two systems that drive the way we think. System 1 is fast, intuitive, and emotional; System 2 is slower, more deliberative, and more logical. Kahneman exposes the extraordinary capabilities—and also the faults and biases—of fast thinking, and reveals the pervasive influence of intuitive impressions on our thoughts and behavior.

Behavioral economics

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