This year’s surprise winner of the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences is Richard Thaler, a prominent behavioural economists. The surprise factor does not come from a lack of prolific and ingenious academic life, rather from the nature of the field of research that Prof Thaler revolutionised. Not many behavioural economists have won the highest honour in the discipline, despite it having gained an established place not only within academia, but also within government departments around the world. After all, behavioural theories challenge some of the credos of mainstream economics, such as consumers granted with perfect information and possessing perfect rationality. Behavioural economists seek to uncover consistent cognitive and behavioural biases in human and to incorporate those into more realistic representations of the world.
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