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Images of particles made from a promising battery cathode material called NMC

Experiments with Appliance Choice

Precourt Energy Efficiency Center

Brian Knutson, psychology

This study examines whether some groups of consumers alter their decision-making process when buying major household appliances due to behavioral nudges, such as ecolabeling. The study will characterize consumer classes and monitor neural activity in each group via brain imaging with functional MRI. Observations of shifts in the manner of decision processing would imply a need to reassess policies for behavioral nudges. Current policy design assumes that nudges do not alter the decision-making process a consumer employs, for example, switching attention from financial to environmental concerns.