Skip to 0 minutes and 4 seconds WANDER JAGER: Climate change, loss of biodiversity, managing a pandemic, these are all problems we face as humanity that require adaptation of our behaviour and the choices that we make. Many policies are developed to support such behavioural changes. For example, the taxation of fossil fuel, informing us about the state of nature, and legislation on wearing masks and social distancing. Increasingly, models are being used to forecast the impact of policy. And obviously, these models are based on assumptions on human behaviour. Economics has always been a discipline where formal models were being used. And as such, it is no surprise that many policy models are based on assumptions of economic rationality of the people. However, we do not behave as individually optimising people.
Skip to 1 minute and 13 seconds Instead, we have habits, learn from others, and are often satisfied with good enough choices. And these mechanisms have serious impacts on the effect of policies.
Skip to 1 minute and 29 seconds KATARZYNA ABRAMCZUK: For example, information campaigns on the impact of our meat consumption on the environment hardly change the food habits that we have, despite the widespread concern we share about this environment. At the same time, we see hipsters changing towards a plant-based diet and their lifestyle seems to be contagious, thus spreading the habit of eating plant-based food. In recent years, computational social science has made important steps in capturing social scientific theory into models of human decision making. In this course, we will introduce you to some of the latest developments in simulating human behaviour. Join us.