Most of us think that we are 'better than average' in most things. We are also 'miscalibrated,' meaning that our sense of the probability of events doesn't line up with reality. When we say we are sure about a certain fact, for example, we may well be right only half the time.

Richard Thaler

Richard Thaler

Profession: Economist
Nationality: American

Some suggestions for you :

Many Americans say they want to be organ donors, but they just don't get around to acting on their intentions. Helping these potential good Samaritans overcome their inertia could prolong thousands of lives a year.

Even a mother - Jewish or not - can't worry about everything. So it is important that we limit our worries to real as opposed to imaginary risks.

For many people, being asked to solve their own retirement savings problems is like being asked to build their own cars.

The ability of businesses to monitor our behavior is already a fact of life, and it isn't going away. Of course we must protect our privacy rights. But if we're smart, we'll also use the data that is being collected to improve our own lives.

One of society's thorniest problems is that children from poor families start school lagging badly behind their more affluent classmates in readiness.

I have an agent, John Brockman, who is an agent to many academic authors like Dan Gilbert and Steven Pinker, and he's very good at conning academics into writing books. He pulled this trick on me.

It is true that I am one of the co-authors of 'Nudge,' and I am a behavioral economist, but it does not mean that everything we write about in that book is behavioral economics, nor does it mean that my co-author, the distinguished legal scholar Cass Sunstein, is a behavioral economist.

Coining a term is not the same as creating a field!

I don't think it says anywhere in the Bible that tithing should be calculated on a before-tax basis.

The main thing that you learn in grad school, or should learn, is how to think like an economist. The rest is just math.

In the 1940s, economics started getting highly mathematical. It was basically because economists weren't smart enough to write down models of real behavior that they started writing down models of highly rational behavior - and they kind of forgot about humans.

It's essential that we understand things like the free-rider problem, but we also need to understand that, fortunately, humans are a little nicer than economists give them credit for. Some people actually leave money at roadside fruit stands; some people give money to NPR so we can listen to it.

People are less likely to think it's immoral to walk away from their home if they know others who have done so. And if enough people do it, the stigma begins to erode.

Social Security may be the most beloved of all the government's programs, partly because it requires so little thinking. You pay taxes while you work, then you and your spouse collect until you die.