Consumers - Events
The discussions taking place during this event helped us understand how behavioural economics could be used to influence public policy across the European Commission, in a way that benefits EU consumers and citizens.
The conference was the third of a series of events organised by the European Commission (EC). It was a follow-up on the behavioural economic studies conducted on behalf of several Commission DGs in the last year. It also invited considerations on how behavioural insights can inform policy-making to an even greater extent.
The EC recently launched studies ranging from cross-border healthcare to online gambling, from hidden fees for card payments to making greener choices for online purchases. It was the time to take stock of the lessons from our recent experience. The discussion didn't merely revolve around philosophical discussions on abstract concepts like trust, reciprocity or behaviour at large. This conference was about how and to what extent behavioural evidence can improve our policies.
About 270 people attended the conference while roughly 300 followed it via live webstreaming. The attendees included consumers NGOs, national regulatory authorities, academic researchers, European Commission services and other European institutions, businesses, economic consultancies, think tanks and the press.
The conference presentations and discussions tackled several key questions, among which:
- How can behavioural insights be collected and applied?
- What role can behavioural insights play in informing policy interventions?
- Which are the most relevant examples where the behavioural approach improved the effectiveness of policy measures?
- What are the main challenges and achievements of the trials run at a national level?
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On 4 May 2013, kids and their parents can participate in cooking workshops led by one of Belgium's chefs, at the Health and Consumers stand in the Berlaymont building. Kids can also enjoy fun games and quizzes at the stand, while their parents explore the rest of the interactive exhibitions on food labelling, food waste and on what the EU does to protect consumers against dangerous products. In addition, visitors can also get a print of themselves as an animal and a plant, if they have their picture taken in the photobooth outside the building.
Visitors are also invited to join the debates on Active and Healthy Ageing, Food Safety and on what you need to know about your rights as a consumer.
This year we will focus on stepping up the enforcement of EU consumer legislation, one of the key priorities of the European Consumer Agenda that the Commission adopted in May 2012.