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Session 50

Today we discuss the idea that our behaviour can be influenced by ‘social nudges’ - small changes in our environment. Learn the useful vocabulary and grammar you need to join the conversation!

환경에 작은 변화를 준다는 뜻의 ‘social nudge’가 우리 행동에 영향을 준다는 의견에 대해 얘기해봅시다. 관련 표현과 문법도 공부해봅시다.

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    Activity 1

Activity 1

Social Nudges

Today we discuss the idea that our behaviour can be influenced by ‘social nudges’ – small changes in our environment.

환경에 작은 변화를 준다는 뜻의 ‘social nudge’가 우리 행동에 영향을 준다는 의견에 대해 얘기해봅시다.


A recording of a young girl’s voice has reduced accidents on the London underground. Which amount describes the approximate reduction in the number of accidents?

a) A third (1/3)
b) A half (1/2)
c) Two-thirds (2/3)

Listen to find out!

Listen to the audio and take the quiz.

Show transcript Hide transcript

안녕하세요? English Together에 오신 것을 환영합니다. 저희 프로그램에서는 최신 주제에 대해 얘기해보고 관련 표현을 알려드리고 있습니다. 저는 손보람입니다.

Hello to our listeners! I'm Tom, thanks for joining us again on English Together!

Hi everyone, I'm Sian and today we're going to be talking about 'social nudges'!

맞습니다. Nudge 살짝 치다, 밀다..라는 뜻입니다. 명사로도 쓸 수 있는데요. Social nudge이론이라는 것은 환경의 변화를 줌으로써 다른 이들의 행동에 영향을 줄 수 있다는 이론입니다. 

Ah yes, there's a famous book about this, right?

That's right! And I think the author, Richard Thaler, won the Nobel prize for Economics.

오늘은 BBC World Service World Hacks의 한 부분을 들어보겠습니다. 진행자는 런던 지하철에서 흘러나오는 여자아이의 녹음소리가 어떤 영향을 주는지 말하고 있는데요. 이 목소리가 사람들에게 무엇을 연상시킨다고 하나요?

News insert

Hello everybody and please listen up.

Harriet Noble
This is a social nudge in action.

Take care on the escalators. Hold on to the handrail and your luggage.

Get your attention straight away, and think 'oh, what's going on?'

Harriet Noble
Nudges are all about small tweaks to our environment, designed to provoke us into making different, better choices.

Dougal Shaw
The desired outcome of this particular nudge is simple – get people to hold the handrail to support themselves if they lose balance, so they don't fall down and injure themselves.

That's a great idea! The girl's voice is the 'nudge' that reminds them to be careful by holding the handrail on the stairs! Plus I think hearing a girl's voice will make people happier during their morning commute.

A commute는 단수 표현으로 통근이라는 뜻입니다. 계속하기 전에 이번주 질문부터 드리겠습니다. 이 소녀의 목소리로 인해 지하철 사고가 얼마나 줄어들었을까요?

A)    거의 3분의 1

B)    거의 절반

C)    거의 3분의 2

Hmm, I can't see the reduction being any more than a third, to tell you the truth.

I think it could well be C). The idea behind nudge theory is that we can make a big difference with just some small tweaks!

A tweak 작은 변화..라는 뜻입니다.

I don't like the idea that somebody somewhere is tweaking my environment to make me do things subconsciously – I think that's a bit strange.

Subconsciously 무의식적으로..라는 뜻입니다

Listen! I want to choose what I do. I want all of my decisions to be conscious decisions! This, this just sounds like manipulation to me.

What's manipulating about promoting public safety?

Well, actually Sian, I don't think having our behaviour altered in this way is safe! Also, most commuters are sensible people and I think it's patronising to be told about public safety in this way.

Patronising은 하대하는, 가르치려 하는..이라는 뜻입니다.

But it's not telling you what to do! It reminds you of what you already know. The girl's voice acts as a trigger!

A trigger는 총의 방아쇠, 무언가를 유발시키는 계기.. 라는 뜻입니다


이런 Nudge들이 효과가 있는 것 같은데요. 오늘 질문의 정답은 바로  C였습니다. 이 소녀의 목소리로 인해 사고가 거의 3분의 2 감소했다고 하네요.  

Wow! That's quite a lot.

You see?! What do you think about that?

Well, obviously I think it's good there are fewer accidents on the London Underground. However, I do find it very worrying that people's behaviour can be manipulated by these tweaks and triggers, like the young girl's voice! People are just so gullible!

Gullible은 잘 속아넘어가는..이라는 뜻입니다. Why do you think everyone is gullible, Tom?

Well, we just heard how easy it is to influence behaviour! What if someone tries to influence our behaviour in a negative way?

What? Who would want to do that?

I think it's gullible of you to assume everyone in the world is nice, Sian. Not everyone is as nice as I am!

Ha! Of course.

오늘도 함께해주셔서 감사합니다. 다음시간에도 함께해요.

Meaning & Use

conscious (adjective)

If we are conscious we are aware of our environment, while thinking clearly and rationally. There are many forms in the script.

  • After two years of unhappiness, I made a conscious decision to quit my job and change my life.

We use subconscious in relation to the parts of our mind we are not aware of. It commonly appears as an adverb, subconsciously, which implies that we are being influenced by parts of our mind which we cannot control.

  • Advertising can influence you subconsciously; you start to desire products that you didn’t want before!

tweak (verb)

Tweak is a verb which describes the process of making small changes. It can also be used as a noun to describe these changes.

  • My essay is nearly finished! I just need to tweak some small details.
  • Thanks for showing me how to fix my laptop. I made some tweaks and it’s working well now!

trigger (verb & noun)

To trigger means ‘to cause something to begin’.

  • Protests in the country triggered a new election.

We can also use the noun form, which describes such causes.

  • The protests were a trigger. The people demanded action immediately afterwards!

Social Nudges

4 Questions

Choose the correct answer.
정답을 선택하세요.

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x / y

Join us for our next episode of English Together when we will learn more useful language and practise your listening skills.

다음 English Together 에피소드를 통해서, 보다 실용적인 영어 표현을 배우고, 영어 듣기도 연습해 보세요.

저희 Facebook 그룹에 가입하셔서 매일 매일 영어 공부를 하세요!

Session Vocabulary

  • nudge 
    살짝 치다, 밀다



    작은 변화




    잘 속아 넘어가는