Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
The Tyranny of UtilityBehavioral Social Science and the Rise of Paternalism$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Gilles Saint-Paul

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780691128177

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691128177.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM PRINCETON SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.princeton.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Princeton University Press, 2017. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in HSO for personal use (for details see http://www.universitypressscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy).date: 11 December 2017

The Policy Prescriptions of Behavioral Economics

The Policy Prescriptions of Behavioral Economics

Chapter:
(p.77) 7 The Policy Prescriptions of Behavioral Economics
Source:
The Tyranny of Utility
Author(s):

Gilles Saint-Paul

Publisher:
Princeton University Press
DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691128177.003.0008

This chapter discusses the policy prescriptions that arise from the research in behavioral economics. A frequent prescription, in various contexts, is to restrict people's choice set—which falls in the category of strong paternalism. The most compelling case for paternalistic intervention is that of higher taxes for addictive goods, or the so-called sin taxes. Such a tax reduces the current consumption of an addictive good by time-inconsistent consumers; this, in turn, reduces consumption of the good by consumers' future incarnations. Moreover, rivalry should be priced by using Pigovian taxation. The chapter then looks at the mildest form of manipulation—libertarian paternalism—which occurs whenever the government, having decided which outcome is “good” for the people, fools them into making the “right” decision, not by restricting their choices but by framing their choice problem so as to favor the preferred outcome.

Keywords:   policy prescriptions, behavioral economics, paternalism, paternalistic intervention, sin tax, Pigovian taxation, libertarian paternalism, addictive goods

Princeton Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.