A Fine Is A Price

This article discusses the findings of a study which investigated the effect of imposing and eliminating fines on parents who were late picking up their children from daycare. Data from ten private daycare centers in Haifa, Israel were collected; in six of the centers, a fine was imposed and then later removed, while the control group consisted of the remaining four daycare centers. After sharing the results of the study, the authors use a thought experiment to model the importance of the data and examine the results through the lens of social norms. 

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Key findings
  • The rate of delay in parents collecting their children from daycare increased when the fine was introduced. 
  • After the fine was removed, the increased rate of delay remained consistent.
Uri Gneezy, University of California, San Diego; and Aldo Rustichini, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities
The University of Chicago