Personalized Text Messages for Collecting Fines

Behavioral Insights Team (2012)
Summary by 
Mark Egan

Using personalized text messages for collecting fines. This is a very nice use of salience. The most effective treatment in this case included using the person’s name and specifying how much they owed compared to a control of receiving a letter notifying them that they owed money. Personalization in policy is an interesting area. Cass Sunstein, co-author of 'Nudge' believes that "personalized defaults are the way of the future". Sunstein says "it is increasingly possible for private and public institutions to produce highly personalized default rules, which reduce the problems with one-size-fits-all defaults. In principle, personalized default rules could be designed for every individual in the relevant population."