Breakfast with Professor Cass Sunstein


Policymakers are increasingly using behavioural insights to achieve public policy goals. By developing regulations that are automatic and intuitive, they have been able to get people to save more for their retirement, contribute to pension plans and raise organ donation rates, among other things. These outcomes have inspired private and public institutions to continue exploring the potential of “nudges” – approaches that steer people towards certain outcomes while also allowing them to go their own way. But this has given rise to a backlash of sorts, with some people objecting that nudges are a form of unacceptable paternalism. Professor Cass Sunstein is one of America’s leading public intellectuals and an advocate of improving human welfare through improved choice architecture in public policy. He will speak to IPS Corporate Associates about the concepts that underpin his work and why well-chosen nudges can make people’s lives better while maintaining freedom of choice. He will discuss how both the private and public sectors nudge people regularly, and will also address why nudges – despite being an insufficient approach to some of the world’s most serious problems – still have major advantages over coercive approaches. This session will be chaired by Mr Donald Low, Associate Dean (Research and Executive Education) at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy. Read the report —IPS Corporate Associates Breakfast: Why Nudge?


  Cass Sunstein_1ResizeProfessor Cass Sunstein is currently the Robert Walmsley University Professor at Harvard. From 2009 to 2012, he was Administrator of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs. He is the Founder and Director of the Program on Behavioral Economics and Public Policy at Harvard Law School. Professor Sunstein has testified before congressional committees on many subjects, and he has been involved in constitution-making and law reform activities in a number of nations. Professor Sunstein is author of many articles and books, including (2001), Risk and Reason (2002), Why Societies Need Dissent (2003), The Second Bill of Rights (2004), Laws of Fear: Beyond the Precautionary Principle (2005), Worst-Case Scenarios (2001), Nudge: Improving Decisions about Health, Wealth, and Happiness (with Richard H. Thaler, 2008), Simpler: The Future of Government (2013) and most recently Why Nudge? (2014) and Conspiracy Theories and Other Dangerous Ideas (2014). He is now working on group decision making and various projects on the idea of liberty. A fuller bio is available here  


If you have any enquiries, please contact Ms Vani Gunasilan at 6516-8377 or via email: 
Friday, 01 August 2014
9.15 am to 11.30 am (Registration begins at 9.00 am)
Lavender Room (Level 3), Orchard Hotel Singapore