The World Bank World Development Report 2015 calls for behavioural-informed policy-making. The EC-JRC leads the change for EU affairs. This post tries to answer to the following: 1. Why should we care about Behavioural Sciences? 2. Why Behavioural issues in Development affairs? 3. Is it time for including behavioural insights into EU and domestic policies?
Differently from previous reports, which focused on hot topics in development economics or on specific sectors, the 2015 World Development Report (WDR) digs into methodology. The caption explains quite clearly the new approach: “Mind, Society and Behavior”. Continue reading →
I have just recently stumbled across the EU’s Bioeconomy strategy, classified in the administrative organogram at least under ‘Research and innovation’. It could also be DG Industry. Or DG Trade. Or DG Env. Or indeed DG Agri. Tucking it away under Research and innovation was a good idea, I believe: best to keep it safely away from daily policy concerns and ditto lobbying. The Bioeconomy – which is defined as encompassing the sustainable production of renewable resources from land, fisheries and aquaculture environments and their conversion into food, feed, fiber bio-based products and bio-energy as well as the related public goods – is seen by the EC as a successor to the EU’s Biosociety program, which however was more scientific in outlook (lots of talk of new technologies).
A big gap in its approach, to me at least, is its lack of discussion on reduced consumption and ‘need‘ (the Club of Rome has some powerful insight into this) which is a pitty. It talks mostly about increasing and diversifying ‘output’, rather than on reducing it or matching it to true need. For in its current outlook, the Bioeconomy feels more like a postersite for EU ‘innovative’ technologies than one for foresight in development priorities. And no, that is not properly done elsewhere in the EC.