Comparative Analysis of Applying Behavioral Public Policy to Telecommunication Market by International Organizations

Comparative Analysis of Applying Behavioral Public Policy to Telecommunication Market by International Organizations

Nagayuki Saito
Copyright: © 2021 |Pages: 13
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-3479-3.ch106
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Since the latter half of the 1990s, various policy methods to replace government regulations have been studied in Western countries. Among the trends, in recent years, international organizations such as the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the European Commission (EC), and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) have considered introducing behavioral public policy as a new policy method, substituting for governmental regulation. This article reviews the status of behavioral public policy being introduced in each international organization. Furthermore, we compare and verify the stages of behavioral public policy in terms of consumer protection policy in each international organization in the telecommunications market, based on a literature review.
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Introduction Of Behavioral Public Policy As A Substitute For Governmental Regulation

In recent years, as a new measure to compensate for the limitations of government regulations, interest in behavioral public policy has been increasing internationally. Behavior Public policy is based on the policy philosophy advocated by Thaler & Sunstein (2003). They advocate libertarian / paternalism as a concept combining contradictory social governance ideals of “libertarianism” and “paternalism.” This concept is a paternalism of relatively weak, soft, non-pushing forms and freedom of choice is not hindered; choices are not limited and do not become a heavy burden.

Thaler and Sunstein suggested that, in order to realize social governance through libertarian paternalism, “the nudge” is effective as a means of transforming people’s behavior. They argue that the nudge is every element of “the choice architecture” that predictably changes the behavior of people without forbidding people’s choices and without significantly changing economic incentives (Thaler & Sunstein 2008). It is intended that by improving the environment in which people choose, they can make wiser choices without restricting any of their options (Thaler, 2018). “The choice architecture” is an interdisciplinary approach that combines and presents information to people’s decision-making by providing information. In the field of cognitive psychology this information includes framing1, anchor ring2, priming3 etc., in the field of social psychology it includes inducements such as social norm4, bandwagon5 etc., and in contract theories it includes default rules6, opt-out schemes etc.

Oliver (2013) defines the behavioral public policy as policy measures that cause people's behavioral change to achieve the purpose of public policy. In other words, by incorporating Nudge into the public policy so far, it is possible to say that “a possible method as a way of obtaining regulatory results without setting rules, that is, a regulation other than the regulations designed to achieve the same public policy objective (Lunn 2014) “to achieve the goal of public policy.

Behavior public policy utilizing nudge is experimentally adopted in Western countries. In the UK, the Behavior Insights Team (BIT) was established in the cabinet under the direction of Prime Minister Cameron at that time, and its utilization is carried out in various policy areas. In particular, it was introduced to the policy theme, which is difficult for government intervention to individual freedom of choice, such as matters related to citizen's lifestyle and values.

In addition, in the United States, the Social and Behavioral Science Team was established in the White House, and the Presidential Decree aiming to utilize the insight of behavioral science was promulgated in September 2015. The Presidential Decree instructs us to consider whether it is possible to replace existing regulations with nudge's approach (The White House 2015).

Key Terms in this Chapter

Nudge: A nudge is a measure advocated by Thaler and Sunstein (2008) that transforms the behavior of people in an appropriate direction for society. This encourages behavioral changes using all the elements of choice architecture that do not prohibit people’s choices and does not change economic incentives significantly, and so changes the behavior of people in a predictable manner.

Cognitive Biases: Cognitive biases is a theory of cognitive psychology and social psychology that posits that when evaluating a certain object, an idea can be distorted in a direction according to a person’s interests and hopes, and the evaluation is distorted by the features that are noticeable to the object.

Behavioral Public Policy: Behavioral public policy is the development of public policy by applying behavioral insights. There are interventions aimed at transforming people’s behavior into desirable behavior by using nudges and correcting cognitive bias.

Behavioral Economics: Behavioral economics is economic studies that do not assume homo-economics and conduct analysis according to the reality of human psychology and emotions.

Choice Architecture: Choice architecture is an interdisciplinary approach that combines and presents information on people’s decision-making by providing information.

Evidence-Based Policy: Evidence-based policy is a policy approach for policy planning based on numerical evidence such as statistical data and is widely adopted in various fields such as social policy, educational policy, and welfare policy.

Behavioral Insights: Behavioral insights are insights gained from theories on behavioral science and social sciences such as decision theory, psychology, cognitive science, brain science, organizational behavior, and group behavior, and so on.

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