ConPolicy Newsletter 2021 - 7

Dear Reader,


In today's issue ConPolicy informs you about: 

We wish you an exciting read!

Kind regards!

Your ConPolicy team

  News about ConPolicy

New short assessment for the Federation of German Consumer Organisations (vzbv)
Amazon Alexa – Impact of smart voice assistants on consumers

Smart digital voice assistants such as Amazon Alexa are being used by more and more consumers. This results not only in opportunities, but also in new risks. On behalf of the Federation of German Consumer Organisations (vzbv), ConPolicy is therefore investigating the effects of voice assistants. One the one hand, it is investigated to what extent recommendation systems of smart assistants influence the selection decisions of consumers to their disadvantage and, on the other hand, how a growing use of voice assistants for consumer decisions and for the control of IoT devices will affect competition.

To answer these questions, expert interviews and a literature analysis will be conducted. In three steps, references of relevant parties will be documented, the current state of research on the effects of voice assistants on consumer interests will be described, and future research needs will be identified.

More information about the project can be found here.

Tackling throwaway culture
ConPolicy presents keynote at event hosted by the German Federal Environmental Agency

On June 15, 2021, the Ökopol-Institute organized the event 'Tackling throwaway culture – Goes Main Stream?!' on behalf of the German Federal Environmental Agency (UBA). The discussion focussed on how the throwaway culture in terms of fast fashion and drugstore disposables could be overcome. 

The event was attended by a wide range of stakeholders from the industry, retail, social enterprises, civil society, politics and science. In his introductory keynote, ConPolicy's Managing Director, Prof. Dr. Christian Thorun, addressed the question of what is important if we want to leave the throwaway culture behind and move towards a circular economy.

The rise of the conscious consumer
ConPolicy contributes to panel discussion at an event organized by the Hoffmann Global Institute for Business & Society

This event hosted by the Hoffmann Global Institute for Business & Society explored the question of what responsibility companies and consumers have with regard to the necessary sustainability transformation in the textile and beauty sector.

Participants in the discussion were: Dr. Thomas Tochtermann, ex-McKinsey, Irene Binder from L'Oréal, Amol Mehra from the Laudes Foundation and ConPolicy Managing Director, Prof. Dr. Christian Thorun.

Consumer research forum provides information on 'nudging' in consumer policy
ConPolicy contributes to the Consumer Research Forum 2021

On 08 June 2021, ConPolicy, together with the Consumer, Market and Policy Research Center (CCMP) of Zeppelin University and the European University Institute (EUI) Florence, hosted the Online Consumer Research Forum 2021 of the Ministry of Food, Rural Areas and Consumer Protection Baden-Württemberg (MLR). The research forum focused on the questions what influence behavioral science findings have had on consumer policy in the last decade and to what extent behavioral science findings should also be taken into account in consumer policy in the coming years.

Keynote speaker Prof. Dr. Cass R. Sunstein (Robert Walmsley University Professor at Harvard) introduced the topic. Panel discussions followed on legal and practical issues related to the use of behavior-based tools. In a closing discussion, experts from the EU and federal levels provided an outlook.

Please find more information here.

  Consumer policy news

Growing interest but continued skepticism about cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin & Co.

Following the rapid price development of so-called cryptocurrencies in recent months, both the German digital association Bitkom as well as the... Read more

Vast majority of German consumers open to technological progress – even if it is happening too fast for some

On the occasion of the German Digital Day (‘Digitaltag’), the digital association Bitkom presented the results of recent consumer surveys on the... Read more

Waste quantities in Germany remain at high level in 2019

On the occasion of the International Day, of the Environmental, the Federal Statistical Office of Germany (Destatis) presented preliminary results on... Read more

Share of short-haul flights remains almost unchanged in 2020 despite decline in total flights during pandemic

Today, the Federal Statistical Office of Germany (Destatis) published new figures on passenger flights in Germany for the year of 2020. Despite a... Read more

Antitrust: Investigation against Apple on App Store rules

Today, the European Consumer Organization BEUC announced that it would join the European Commission's investigation against Apple for distorting... Read more

  Recommended reading

Ingendahl, M. et al.
Who can be nudged? Examining nudging effectiveness in the context of need for cognition and need for uniqueness

In the last decade, there has been a growing research focus on the subtle modifications of choice architecture that have strong effects on consumer... Read more

Digital consumer protection report

For the first time, this report maps out potential threats in the digital space for consumers over the past year, thus identifying current challenges... Read more

Thorun, C. et al.
Nudge 2.0: New applications of behavioral insights in consumer policy

This preliminary study was created in preparation for the Consumer Research Forum Baden-Württemberg 2021 (VFF 2021). It does not claim to be complete,... Read more

EBA 2020 annual report

The European Banking Authority (EBA) published today its 2020 Annual Report, which provides a detailed account of all the work the Authority achieved... Read more

Targeting scams – Report of the ACCC on scam activity 2020

This report marks 12 years of the ACCC’s annual Targeting Scams report. It explains key trends in scam activity and highlights the impact of scams on... Read more