Russian oil conspiracies, The blackout myth and Governance through fear

31 July 2020 14:00 - By: Social Innovation in the Energy Transition | Add to my calendar


In this webinar, behavioural scientists Ondrej Kacha and Jesper Akesson explain why and how public servants should leverage psychological evidence in the design of energy policies.

Governments have several instruments at hand to reduce consumer demand for energy. These instruments can take the form of various subsidies, legislation changes, or information campaigns. They aim to encourage consumers to adopt greener technology, develop energy-efficient habits or travel via sustainable modes of transport. However, the well-intended policies often stumble over people’s unwillingness to change, lack of interest, or limited mental resources. Civil servants need to consider these and other psychological factors in order to design energy policies that meet their intended outcomes.

As part of their talk, Ondrej and Jesper introduce a new online toolkit that helps policymakers consider psychological factors that might affect the success of their policy. The interactive resource provides civil servants with prompts and tailored recommendations on making their energy policies psychologically informed and ultimately more likely to succeed.

Ondrej is a behavioural scientist at The Behaviouralist. He completed his M.Phil in Social Psychology at the University of Cambridge. In The Behaviouralist, he helps translate empirical evidence into real-world interventions that help consumers adopt green technology, sustainable habits, and shift to greener modes of transport. Ondrej has also founded a research non-profit that helps environmental initiatives apply behavioural insights in their work.

Jesper Åkesson is a behavioural economist and the managing director of The Behaviouralist. He holds a Master of Public Affairs from Brown University (USA), and an M.Phil. in economics from the University of Oxford. Jesper has extensive experience leading collaborations with public and private organisations, including in the domains of water, energy, and transport.