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This website was created by the OECD Observatory of Public Sector Innovation (OPSI), part of the OECD Public Governance Directorate (GOV).

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Behavioural tool

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In June 2016, Oxera and the Nuffield Centre for Experimental Social Sciences (CESS) published the results of an experiment testing the effectiveness of different ‘prompts’ in encouraging consumers to shop around. The study, commissioned by the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), found that personalised messages were the most effective in stimulating product comparisons, while generic messaging appealing to social norms also had a significant impact.
Small businesses were sent behaviorally-informed emails encouraging them to apply to the Growth Vouchers program. A key part of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills’ (BIS) remit is to provide support to small businesses in the United Kingdom. BIS has explored a number of initiatives to help these businesses grow. One of these initiatives was ‘Growth Vouchers’ – a program of matched funding with a £30 million budget. Businesses could apply for funding to help subsidize the…
Cambridgeshire Constabulary has noted that 1,650 hate incidents were reported within Cambridgeshire between 1st December 2019 and 28th February 2021 and the vast majority of reported incidents (1,344) were racially-based. The data indicates that since the pandemic (March 2020), incidents of Hate crime have increased for people with the following protected characteristics: disabled people, LGBTQ+ people, race, religion. These groups are already disproportionately adversely impacted by COVID-19…
When firms in the UK do not follow the Financial Conduct Authority’s (FCA) Rules or Principles, and consumers incur financial losses as a result, the FCA seeks to ensure customers receive adequate compensation, or redress. In 2011/12, the FCA helped obtain over £150 million worth of redress for consumers. Instances where consumers are due redress do not often receive publicity. Instead, the firm alerts customers to a potential issue, usually in the form of a letter that gives customers…
How does the presence of consumer protection affect decisions at retirement? Oxera undertook a behavioural experiment for the UK Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) to understand the role of FSCS protection—in both how consumers select their retirement income products, and whether they choose to obtain financial advice. This revealed how people behave in a realistic environment, providing insight into actual consumer behaviour and the importance of the FSCS in their decision-making.
As of 2007, the UK Ministry of Justice was imposing over £350 million in new court fines annually, only half of which were collected within six months. In 2011, the Ministry faced over £600 million in outstanding unpaid fines. Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunal Service (HMCTS), which administers the collection of fines, incurs significant costs from non-compliant debtors. In addition to resources for case-management and follow-up phone calls, bailiffs are assigned to recover the debt…