Panel Chair: Malik Bozzo-Rey

Nudges could be considered as an instance of the emergence of new forms of normativity. This new normativity is characterized by its extralegal and non-coercive nature, and its influence on individual behaviour. The concept of ‘nudge’, which consists of shaping individual decisions without coercion, best exemplifies these new normativities. However, the concept cannot encompass the wide variety of non-legal forms of social regulation, which both predates Sunstein & Thaler’s conceptualization of nudges and will outlive it.
This panel invites inter-disciplinary contributions that address problems in the following range of approach:
Firstly, it considers the genealogy of nudges. They are either described as a new phenomenon, or linked to Mill’s discussion of liberalism in Of Liberty. But it could be interesting to highlight the concept of ‘indirect legislation’ coined by Jeremy Bentham.
Secondly, this panel proposes a close exam of the concepts used to describe new regulatory non-legal mechanisms. The use of concepts such as ‘libertarian paternalism’, ‘architecture of choice’, and ‘incentives’ in the scientific literature is challenging. It is also challenged by other views such as soft paternalism, coercive paternalism or a different approach of incentives.
Thirdly, it intends to look into today’s application of nudges. The concrete implementation of nudges and choice architectures in specific public policy fields (health, environment, education, economic regulation) need to be examined. Are nudges the sign for the rise of a new conception of the State?
This panel seeks to provide an overview of recent research in these areas and to identify how they can be linked.

Malik Bozzo-Rey, Lille Catholic University « From Indirect Legislation to Nudge: Institutionalizing Normativities »
Pierre-Yves Néron, Lille Catholic University « Is Regulating Behavioral Market Failures a Form of Paternalism? »
Anne Brunon-Ernst, University Paris 2 Panthéon Assas « Philosophical Roots of the Concept of Nudges – Defining Bentham’s Indirect Legislation »

Date: 27 August 2015

ECPR General Conference, Montreal, Canada – Building: Jean-Brillant Floor: 3 Room: B-329