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Open AccessArticle

Recommendations with a Nudge

Department of Computer Science, UiT The Arctic University of Norway, 9037 Tromsø, Norway
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Technologies 2019, 7(2), 45;
Received: 12 April 2019 / Revised: 28 May 2019 / Accepted: 7 June 2019 / Published: 13 June 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Next Generation of Recommender Systems)
PDF [302 KB, uploaded 13 June 2019]


In areas such as health, environment, and energy consumption, there is a need to do better. A common goal in society is to get people to behave in ways that are sustainable for the environment or support a healthier lifestyle. Nudging is a term known from economics and political theory, for influencing decisions and behavior using suggestions, positive reinforcement, and other non-coercive means. With the extensive use of digital devices, nudging within a digital environment (known as digital nudging) has great potential. We introduce smart nudging, where the guidance of user behavior is presented through digital nudges tailored to be relevant to the current situation of each individual user. The ethics of smart nudging and the transparency of nudging is also discussed. We see a smart nudge as a recommendation to the user, followed by information that both motivates and helps the user choose the suggested behavior. This paper describes such nudgy recommendations, the design of a smart nudge, and an architecture for a smart nudging system. We compare smart nudging to traditional models for recommender systems, and we describe and discuss tools (or approaches) for nudge design. We discuss the challenges of designing personalized smart nudges that evolve and adapt according to the user’s reactions to the previous nudging and possible behavioral change of the user. View Full-Text
Keywords: digital nudging; smart nudging; behavioral change; nudge-driven filtering; personalization; situation-awareness; nudge design; behavior recommendation digital nudging; smart nudging; behavioral change; nudge-driven filtering; personalization; situation-awareness; nudge design; behavior recommendation

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Karlsen, R.; Andersen, A. Recommendations with a Nudge. Technologies 2019, 7, 45.

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