The chocolate self-delusion

Behavioral insights into intertemporal choices, self-control issues and the virtues of commitment

Part 3

Previously, we discussed how the concept of time inconsistency can explain why we sometimes act against our own interest, and we identified different types of time-inconsistent decision makers. Now let’s turn to the really important part: strategies to save us from ourselves.

Continue reading “The chocolate self-delusion”

Which type of time-inconsistent decision maker are you?

Answer the six questions in this personality test to find out!



The chocolate self-delusion

Behavioral insights into intertemporal choices, self-control issues and the virtues of commitment

Part 2

Last week, we identified time-inconsistent decision making as the main reason for our chocolate issues.  We will now look into it in a bit more detail.

Types of inconsistent decision-makers

Behavioral economists group people with respect to the extent of how much self-control problems they exhibit and their awareness of these problems.

Continue reading “The chocolate self-delusion”

The chocolate self-delusion

Behavioral insights into intertemporal choices, self-control issues and the virtues of commitment

Part 1

“Oh no, I did it again. My chocolate supply vanished into thin air. Okay, okay, not into the air, but into my belly. I just don’t get it. When it comes to sweets, I just cannot control myself.

I’m not a fool, I do know that devouring an entire bar of chocolate a day isn’t good for me in the long run. Strangely enough though, this happens every time I buy some. Why on earth can I not stick to my plans and just eat two pieces a day?!

Seems like “future me’ is a different version of “present me’ and dislikes performing my initial plans. What’s wrong with me?’

Well, from a behavioral economist’s point of view, the diagnose is that you suffer from time-inconsistency and a projection bias. But you’re not alone. Time-inconsistency is very common among humans, and there are remedies to cure it.

Continue reading “The chocolate self-delusion”

Affiliate Marcus Giamattei appointed as Professor

Our affiliate Marcus Giamattei is appointed as Professor for Macroeconomics at the Bard College Berlin. Before joining the Bard College Berlin, Marcus was assistant professor at the University of Passau. He is affiliated with CeDEx at the University of Nottingham, UK, and has been a visiting researcher at Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona. Marcus developed ClassEx, a tool for interactive classroom and lab-in-the-field experiments with mobile devices and LIONESS Lab, a platform for online experiments. Those platforms enable instructors and researchers to use experiments outside of the conventional laboratory environment. ClassEx and LIONESS are used in over 50 countries around the world.

Eid Mubarak

Eid Mubarak

يسعدنا أن نتقدّم إليكم بأحر التهاني وأطيب الأماني بمناسبة حلول عيد الأضحى المبارك. وكل عام وأنتم وأحبتكم بخير وسعادة.

We are very pleased to extend to you our warmest congratulations and best wishes on the occasion of Eid Al-Adha. May you celebrate it every year with your loved ones being well and happy.

Image kindly provided by

BEHAVIA and ASBAR form partnership

ASBAR & BEHAVIA Contract Signing 1

Big day for BEHAVIA: We have teamed up with the Asbar Center for Studies, Research & Communications to form a behavioral insights consultancy exclusively addressing the key priorities in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Working hand in hand to deliver the best results for our clients, we are very excited to now provide unique Saudi experience in public policy paired with Behavioral Economic Engineering made in Germany.

Some impressions taken during the official launch event…

Continue reading “BEHAVIA and ASBAR form partnership”

Top rank for BEHAVIA’s academic incubator

16th place among the best young universities worldwide and 2nd place in Germany

BEHAVIA‘s  academic incubator and alma mater Passau University has secured another top result in the latest Times Higher Education (THE) Ranking for 2019. Among the universities aged 50 or younger (‘Young University Ranking’) Passau came in 16th and in second place in Germany.

Find more information in the official press release.

Overcoming Behavioral Impediments to Honesty

For the 17th time, our affiliate Prof. Dr. Johann Graf Lambsdorff and his team are organizing the workshop “The Economics of Corruption”, at the University of Passau. This year’s workshop focusses on “Overcoming Behavioral Impediments to Honesty” and will be held from September 22-29, 2019.

The workshop provides graduate and PhD-students with experimental, behavioral and institutional tools for doing research on corruption and good governance. For further information and registration, please approach

Further reading on behavioral approaches to increase honesty and integrity:

  1. How income and tax rates provoke cheating – An experimental investigation of tax morale
  2. Preventing Corruption by Promoting Trust – Insights from Behavioral Science