Nudging Progress on Funding for Safe Drinking Water

This year’s Nobel Prize in Economics went to Richard Thaler, who pioneered “nudging” to help people volunteer to make more personally and socially beneficial decisions. As an example, having employees automatically enrolled for retirement contributions and then allowing them to lower their contributions results in considerably more retirement savings than having them “opt-in” to retirement contributions with no default contributions. Similarly, informing water users that their water use substantially exceeds their neighbors’ significantly reduces their water use.