Emergence & development of behavioral public policy units in government: the case of Turkey

Kusseven A., YILDIZ M.

ASIA PACIFIC JOURNAL OF PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION, 2021 (Journal Indexed in ESCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/23276665.2021.1958353
  • Keywords: Behavioural public policies, nudge, multiple streams model, policy entrepreneur, Turkey


The last two decades witnessed a significant rise in the use of behavioural insights in the design and successful implementation of public policies. This creative method of policy design and implementation, also known as "nudging", makes use of biases in individual decision-making processes to increase the success of policy interventions. As of 2021, there are more than 200 nudge units in the world, some located in governments. This is a detailed case study of the creation and development of the behavioural public policy/nudge unit in the Turkish government, which is located in the Ministry of Trade. This unit emerged as a result of a successful policy experiment via knowledge transfer from the United Kingdom's Behavioural Insights Team with help from the UK Embassy in Ankara. A detailed account of the creation process, organisational structure, activities, and future objectives of this unit is presented by using John Kingdon's multiple streams model, reviewing the literature, analysing official documents, and conducting in-depth interviews. Lessons drawn from this case study can be helpful to actors from the public policy community in developing countries.