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Philip Kotler: Behavioural Economics or Social Marketing? The Latter!

[Sundaytimes] When it comes to efforts to influence the behaviour of other people - such as smoking, drink driving, drug abuse, obesity, wasting water, wearing seat belts - we have the whole sciences of psychology, social psychology, sociology and anthropology to guide us. We expect these sciences to shed light on the underlying “causes” of different behaviours, and this presumably will help us arrive at better “cures.”

The latest science to claim answers comes from economics, strangely, in the idea of “behavioural economics.” President Barrack Obama is described as being guided by behavioural economists in planning his many reforms. Behavioural economics is a radical challenge to classical economists’ assumption that persons are highly rational in their decision making. Through dozens of laboratory experiments, Dan Ariely and other researchers have shown that most people do not make the “rational” choice that would best serve their interest...More

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