Randi Karlsen, Anders Andersen, Recommendations with a Nudge, Technologies, Vol. 7, No. 2, 2019, ISSN 2227-7080.
In areas such as health, environment, and energy consumption, there is a need to do better. A common goal in society is to get people to behave in ways that are sustainable for the environment or support a healthier lifestyle. Nudging is a term known from economics and political theory, for influencing decisions and behavior using suggestions, positive reinforcement, and other non-coercive means. With the extensive use of digital devices, nudging within a digital environment (known as digital nudging) has great potential. We introduce smart nudging, where the guidance of user behavior is presented through digital nudges tailored to be relevant to the current situation of each individual user. The ethics of smart nudging and the transparency of nudging is also discussed. We see a smart nudge as a recommendation to the user, followed by information that both motivates and helps the user choose the suggested behavior. This paper describes such nudgy recommendations, the design of a smart nudge, and an architecture for a smart nudging system. We compare smart nudging to traditional models for recommender systems, and we describe and discuss tools (or approaches) for nudge design. We discuss the challenges of designing personalized smart nudges that evolve and adapt according to the user’s reactions to the previous nudging and possible behavioral change of the user.