Irrationality during the Pandemic

The following is a project created by Panagiotis Paris Hiotis for the Global Pandemics in an Unequal World taught by Prof. Sakiko Fukuda-Parr.

This paper utilizes insights from behavioral economics and behavioral science, to explain the irrational behavior that has taken place during the covid-19 pandemic. Behavioral economics argues that people behave irrationally, despite what the classical economic theory of optimization and utility maximization tells us. The science also studies the many cognitive biases and heuristics that are a major part of our irrational behavior. In this paper, I will examine the different biases and heuristics that are most associated with the pandemic. I analyze each bias, while giving an example of real-world behavior that relates to covid-19 and provide suggestions on how to control our impulses and make more calculated decisions. Finally, I examine nudges, a tool used in behavioral economics and behavioral science to influence decision making in a cost effective and non-intrusive way, based on choice architecture and behavioral insights.

Click below to read the full paper:

Panagiotis Paris Hiotis Irrationality during the pandemic FINAL