[Report] Applying Behavioural Science to Advance Environmental Sustainability

Applying Behavioural Science to Advance Environmental Sustainability: An overview for policymakers
Hitomi Rankine and Donya Khosravi
United Nations ESCAP, Environment and Development Division, BangkokWorking Paper Series
December 2021, 26 pages

Applying behavioural science to environmental challenges can help policymakers better target and redirect unsustainable behaviours. This report draws on published work to provide an overview of behaviourally informed interventions, why they should be considered by governments and how they can be devised and applied. This is followed by an outline of the areas of opportunity in the environmental context and ends with a brief discussion of the challenges tied to applying behaviourally informed interventions. Given the urgency of changing trajectory of environmental degradation, this paper concludes that behavioural science presents an important opportunity to strengthen environmental policymaking in a wide range of contexts and deserves further investment by national governments in the environmental policy community.