Steve Shu's Blog

A Perspective on How Behavioral Economists Think We Should Deal With Reason and Emotion in Decision Making

I thought I would re-post an answer to a question I was asked to answer on Quora, as it illustrates a conceptual flavor of how knowledge of behavioral economics can be applied to help navigate behavioral obstacles and opportunities.

The question:

How do behavioral economists think we should deal with reason and emotion in our decisions?

My answer:

The balancing act is tricky, and I think context and desired outcomes matter. For example:

Please take a quick, 30-second survey for my book – Inside Nudging

I am writing a book for management professionals and those interested in implementing behavioral science (which includes behavioral economics and finance) in business settings. Situations include the incubation of innovation centers, behavioral science overlay capabilities, or advancement of existing organizations. I’d love your input on what challenges you see and what you’d like to see addressed!


Inside Nudging: The Excerpts (release 1)

If you are interested in the the management of behavioral science initiatives, the Introduction and Chapter 1 are now available for free in iBook format.

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What Are The Best Management Consulting Books?

There are four books that I recommend as core to the generic practice of consulting. These are:

My Behavioral Science, Design, and Business Book Reading List

As I was gathering my thoughts for my Inside Nudging project (, a project that I envision tying together the application of behavioral science in business contexts and providing more of an inside look at innovation, strategy and implementation, I wanted to take stock of books that have probably influenced (liberally interpreted) the way I look at behavioral science.

Perhaps you’ll find something of here of interest to you for your weekend read. I am also open to getting more book recommendations. Thanks!

Behavioral Economics and Behavioral Finance Manifesto

As 2014 comes to a close, I’ve been reflecting on various books, presentations, research, tools and solutions, software and applications that I’ve been involved with and organizations I’ve been consulting to over the years. I’ve always found reflecting on the past to be useful in helping me better understand nuances in my values. In this post, I want to share my thoughts on design values related to behavioral economics and behavioral finance (which going-forward in this post I’ll simply refer to as behavioral science for brevity).

Emergence of Formal Behavioral Insights Teams and Initiatives

I recently ran into a short video by the New South Wales government which does a great job of introducing the notion of behavioral insights and application in the governmental space. Although still early, behavioral insights and the application of behavioral economics principles have been going global in the public policy space.

Integrating Behavioral Economics and Consulting

Over the past few years, I have been involved with a number of projects that utilize behavioral economics principles to improve outcomes or change people’s behavior. Since this blog has a long history covering management consulting, I thought I would share some thoughts on integrating behavioral economics into the practice of consulting.