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.

Richard Thaler

Richard Thaler

Profession: Economist
Nationality: American

Some suggestions for you :

How can government reduce the frequency and the severity of future catastrophes? Companies that have the potential to create significant harm must be required to pay for the costs they inflict, either before or after the fact. Economists agree on this general approach. The problem is in putting such a policy into effect.

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

The lesson of my field, behavioral economics, is that we need to understand the ways in which we differ from the rational human assumed in standard economic theory.

A nudge is some feature of the environment that changes the behaviour of humans but would not change the behaviour of rational economic agents, what we call Econs.

The good thing I will say about the Chicago School is that it was always about the world, not about the abstract.

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.

If you're trading individual securities, you're almost certainly making a mistake. Because most professional managers can't outperform their benchmarks, and there's little reason to think that individuals can.

Real people have trouble balancing their checkbooks, much less calculating how much they need to save for retirement; they sometimes binge on food, drink, or high-definition televisions. They are more like Homer Simpson than Mr. Spock.

It makes sense for social scientists to become more involved in policy because many of society's most challenging problems are, in essence, behavioral.

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

God did not say that you should be able to borrow one hundred percent of the price of a house.

When employees are first eligible for a retirement savings plan, they should be enrolled unless they choose to opt out.

The lesson for businesses is you are dealing with real people. Those are your customers, those are your employees, those are your bosses, and the better you understand how real people tick, the more successfully you will be able to accomplish your goals.

For amateur golfers, I think one of the biggest mistakes is to model their play on professionals.