A dismal reality : behavioural analysis and consumer policy
Title: A dismal reality : behavioural analysis and consumer policy
Author: ESPOSITO, Fabrizio
Citation: Journal of consumer policy, 2017, Vol. 40, No. 2, pp. 193-216
ISSN: 0168-7034; 1573-0700
Before the behavioural turn, the economic account of consumer policy concerns was too optimistic and reductive. After the turn, we, the consumers, are more likely to need from an economic perspective a more intrusive consumer policy. This is the dismality thesis defended in this article. The dismality thesis is a theoretical, comparative, and argumentative thesis, albeit normatively incomplete. It follows from two premises. First, pre-behavioural economics elaborated a restricted theory of consumer harm in unregulated markets (“consumer harm premise”) and, second, it overstated the effectiveness of information disclosure as a means of consumer policy (“institutional premise”). The dismality thesis is further supported by a comparison of the discussion of attributes control in the pre- and post-behavioural turn literature and by commenting on the main source of controversy about attributes control in the post-turn literature, the so-called “artificial truncation” of behavioural analysis.
Published online: 05 January 2017
Grant number: FP7/269722/EU
Type of Access: openAccess
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