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NCJ Number: 77202 Find in a Library
Title: Changing Benefits and Costs To Encourage Lawful and Desired Behavior
Journal: Crime and Delinquency  Volume:27  Issue:2  Dated:(April 1981)  Pages:225-233
Author(s): S Nagel; M Neef
Date Published: 1981
Page Count: 9
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article emphasizes the usefulness of a benefit-cost perspective in generating ideas for encouraging lawful behavior in a variety of different situations.
Abstract: The behavior of individuals, business firms, and government officials can be viewed as stemming from their implicit desire to maximize perceived benefits minus costs, taking into consideration monetary and nonmonetary elements and the probability that key events, on which those benefits and costs depend, will occur. This perspective emphasizes that encouraging legally desired behavior requires increasing the benefits and decreasing the costs of doing the right deed, increasing the costs and decreasing the benefits of doing the wrong deed, and favorably influencing the probabilities of the key contingent events. Such a perspective can be helpful in generating relevant ideas that might otherwise be overlooked, thought of less quickly, or thought of in a less organized way. Also, ideas can be avoided that might not substantially affect relevant benefits and costs. Such a perspective can be contrasted with (1) a regulatory one, which emphasizes government orders, enforcement agencies, and penalties, and (2) a rehabilitative orientation, which emphasizes changing the values of wrongdoers rather than altering the situation so that their values motivate them to engage in lawful behavior. Three footnotes are provided. (Author abstract modified)
Index Term(s): Behavior modification; Behavioral objectives; Behavioral science research; Cost/Benefit Analysis; Perception; Social psychology
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