Ideas for Comparative Research about How Rules Shape Behavior in the US and in China

February 12, 2014-11:30 am to 12:30 pm

Professor Benjamin van Rooij will be presenting this lecture as part of the UCI Center for Psychology and Law's speaker series. 

In both China and the US, non-compliance with regulatory rules is an important problem undermining the law's function to mitigate economic, health, and ecological risks. Much existing research on compliance from criminology, law and economics, and socio-legal studies has helped us to understand the complexity of how rules shape behavior and has explained why violations keep recurring. This body of work has demonstrated the mixed effects of a deterrence punishment based enforcement strategy and underlined the importance but also the complexity of using both collaborative, educational, and punitive approaches to get people to obey the law. Much of this body of work has been less able to evidence a feasible and effective approach to enhance compliance. In social psychology, economic psychology and behavioral economics there have over the last decades been a number of studies, mostly of an experimental nature, that offer original and also hopeful insights about new approaches to enhance compliance. This talk with discuss an initiative to replicate and expand on these studies seeking to make them directly applicable in real life business and regulatory contexts, both in China and the US.