Inside Nudging: Implementing Behavioral Science Initiatives
Inside Nudging: Implementing Behavioral Science Initiatives by Steve Shu is quite different than the books I have reviewed in the past. Because it’s a non-fiction book, it was important to me to make sure I really understood the material so I could give an accurate opinion on the book. Right away, Shu makes it clear that in order to utilize the material in this book, there is no expertise needed. Yes, some sort of knowledge base on the topic would be helpful, but it really isn’t needed. The material within this book really explains how to implement behavioral science initiatives within a general structure, so the reader can adapt as it pertains to their specific situation.
Shu starts off with a preamble about his past and what makes him a voice worth listening to within the topic of behavioral science initiatives. Also, he reiterates that this is more of an instructional, how-to book than a “what is behavioral science” book. In simple terms, this topic is still relatively new. The application of behavioral science into the “real world” is still being newly introduced. For this reason, I felt this book held a lot of power within the realm of behavioral science. This may be a CEO or manager’s first glimpse into how they can utilize behavioral science initiatives within their own company or life.
Shu makes this book personal, in a professional way. He gives insight into how he came about doing this type of work. The mention of his wife gives her credit for pushing him toward continuing new start-ups within companies. I found the whole process of implementing behavioral academic insights into actions really interesting. As I am not an expert in this topic, I had assumed prior to reading this that these types of processes had already been used as practical tools for years, maybe even decades.
If I was in a position where this topic was relevant and I could use it for an organization I was a part of, I would be completely devoted. One program that was initiated that I found very helpful and inspiring included a plan for people to save money and “retire with dignity.” This is really important at a time when many working class people are unable to foresee retiring in their future. I believe that this book can come in handy for anyone interested in this topic. I do believe that anyone who reads this book, with any level of prior knowledge of the topic, could get something out of it.
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