Nudge - Zor Ka Jhatka Dheere Se Lage (small tweeks big impact)

Steve is very shy and withdrawn, invariably helpful but with little interest in people or in the world of reality. A meek and tidy soul, he has a need for order and structure, and a passion for detail.

Is Steve more likely to be a librarian or a farmer? (Place Washington DC, USA)

Before you proceed, pause for a moment and make your choice - A for librarian and B for the farmer and also make a mental note for your reasoning. The point is not about finding the right answer but to develop an awareness about your own decision-making process. Your decisions must be based on economics (SAFe principle #1, FLOW - Principles of Product Development Flow).

This is very important especially if you are a product designer, manager or owner. These roles have a very important role to play in making decisions for the product.

If your choice is A, Librarian then it is wrong.

In this talk, we will explore some concepts of cognitive bias and Nudge from behavioural economics in the context of product development. Some of these aspects were considered as part of the during my work with Jaguar Land Rover (electrified power train project i-PACE project)

Now why the choice A (Librarian) is wrong, This is an interesting example of a heuristic bias. While making the decision we forget to consider the overall population of farmers and librarians. The description “a meek and tidy soul, he has a need for order and structure” flips the decision towards librarian for most people.

This depends on occupational stereotypes while ignoring “equally relevant statistical considerations.” The question is supposed to illustrate the shallowness of our intuitions about probability. “Did it occur to you that there are more than 20 male farmers for each male librarian in the United States? Because there are so many more farmers, it is almost certain that more ‘meek and tidy’ souls will be found on tractors than at library information desks.”

The related topic on this is NUDGE, which consists of design of choice architecture.

It is based on


Understanding Mappings


Give feedback

Expect error

Structure Complex choices

A properly (ethically) designed system can benefit society. (Like auto-enrolment for pension funds in UK)


This topic is the outcome of pioneering work done two Nobel laureates - Daniel Kahneman (2002 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences. for his work on the psychology of judgment and decision-making,) and Richard Thaler (2017 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences for his contributions to behavioural economics.).


These concepts are extensively used by many digital / social media companies. There are also ethical consideration in applying these concepts.


Outline/Structure of the Talk

00:00 - 00:10 mins Context setting

00:11 - 00:30 mins Interactive discussion and presentation

00:31 - 00: 40 min Applicability in various sceanrios

00:41 - 00:45 min Q&A and closing

Learning Outcome

- Points to consider while prioratising backlog

- Economic deciosn making

Target Audience

Product Managers, Product Owners, Architects, Designers and Executives

Prerequisites for Attendees



schedule Submitted 1 year ago

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