Barry Schwartz

Barry Schwartz is a professor of psychology at Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania and the author of The Paradox of Choice and The Costs of Living.

Suppose you believe that a central aim of public policy in a democratic society should be improving the welfare of its citizens. Even when resources are plentiful, this is a challenging task because of the difficulty of determining what ‘welfare’ consists in. Beyond basic necessities, there is great variation in what people want out of life. This is true with respect to material...

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