TEDtalk: How Behavioral Science Can Lower Your Energy Bill

In this February TED talk, Alex Laskey, founder and president of Opower, talks about using psychology to help energy customers lower their costs.

The method isn’t what you think. Laskey notes  an experiment asking residents to turn off their air conditioning to save energy. Residents received one of four messages about the request, from saving money to saving the earth. And the one they responded to, Laskey notes, is this:   “when surveyed 77% of your neighbors said that they turn off their air conditioning and fans and fans.”

“If something is inconvenient — even if we believe in it — moral suasion  financial incentives don’t do much to move us. But social pressure? That’s powerful stuff. And harnessed correctly it can be a powerful force for good.”

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