Should governments save people from themselves? Do governments have the right to influence citizens’ behavior related to smoking tobacco, eating too much, not saving enough, drinking alcohol, or taking marijuana—or does this create a nanny state, leading to infantilization, demotivation, and breaches in individual autonomy? Looking at examples from both sides of the Atlantic and around the world, Government Paternalism examines the justifications for, and the prevalence of, government involvement and considers when intervention might or might not be acceptable. Building on developments in philosophy, behavioral economics, and psychology, Julian Le Grand explore the roles, boundaries, and responsibilities of the government and its citizens in his new book The Government Paternalist: nanny state or helpful friend?
Julian Le Grand is Richard Titmuss Professor of Social Policy at LSE.
Howard Glennerster is Emeritus Professor of Social Policy at LSE.
The Department of Social Policy (@LSESocialPolicy) is the longest established in the UK and offers outstanding teaching based on the highest quality empirical research in the field.
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