Watching TED Talks is a popular pastime at CN&CO. We visit regularly to clear our heads, have a laugh or get inspired. TED Talks open our minds, spark new ways of thinking and can lead to some very interesting conversations. Each week we pick a favourite and publish it on a Tuesday, because we like how “TED Talk Tuesday” sounds. This week’s talk was selected by Allan Bader. Here’s why he chose it:

Although this talk is about traffic congestion and what they tried in Stockholm, it can definitely be used in other social circumstances.

Following on from yesterday’s  I Wish Someone Had Told Me blog by our enviro-activist Blake Dyason, could these nudges be employed in the fight to reduce pollution?


Perhaps an additional charge for the plastic lid on your takeaway coffee cup from your favourite coffee shop? Do you really need the lid? Perhaps even an additional charge on the paper cup itself.

This last one is a bit tricky, as the business model of the takeaway coffee shop is exactly that!

Other places, and a perfect example is the coffee shop at my hockey club, they sell a cappuccino for R23 but then ring it up as R25. When asked why, they say there is an additional charge for the cup.

A few things are wrong here. One, nowhere is this mentioned on any pricing boards nor mentioned by the sales person, but the second and biggest flaw in this sales method is that they don’t allow you to take the ceramic mug more than 10m away from the shop frontage to go watch the hockey.

Perhaps it is the sales pitch that needs to be rectified and one way around this is to advertise the cappuccino for R25 and then if they opt for non-takeaway, they only get charged R23, with the buyer being pleasantly surprised.

Simple nudges like this can make a massive difference to the purchasing decisions of people and in turn effect the environment in a better way!

So, keep an eye out for little nudges that you can change with your life and maybe chat to the manager at the shop to see if they will be willing to help the fight!