Consumer Policy Research Centre

Making Consumer Decisions Easier and Fairer

Markets rely on consumers actively participating by choosing between different products and services according to their preferences.

Experience demonstrates consumers regularly encounter difficulties navigating and making choices in increasingly complex markets for products and services. Further, behavioural economics and social psychology suggest individuals often depart from “rational” decision-making processes.

For markets to facilitate genuinely competitive pressures, consumers need to be empowered to make genuinely informed choices, comprehending the options presented to them and being enabled to act on this information.

In April 2018, CPRC released Five Preconditions of Effective Consumer Engagement – a conceptual framework, which explores the necessary conditions to facilitate consumer participation in markets, and demand-side settings required by policymakers and regulators to ensure markets are effective in delivering positive consumer outcomes.

CPRC is building on this research, exploring initiatives which better support consumer decision-making processes through:

  • Improving information disclosure to enable fair comparison of products and services;
  • Effective consumer and community consultation strategies to support market engagement – with a focus on disengaged and vulnerable consumers; and,
  • Investigating and trialling behavioural interventions to evaluate the potential benefits or harm for consumers.

Projects

October 19, 2018

Energy literacy – community education and outreach

Community workers are on the front line when households struggle with the cost of their energy bills. They must have… Read More ▸

October 11, 2018

Discussion paper: But are they any good?

In a range of service industries, consumers often encounter poor service including unexpected service outages, inexplicable fees and charges, transfer issues,… Read More ▸

May 2, 2018

Report: Five Preconditions of Effective Consumer Engagement

On 16 April 2018, CPRC released its foundational research report Five Preconditions of Effective Consumer Engagement. The report presents a… Read More ▸

September 27, 2017

Service Quality Metrics

In a range of service industries, consumers often encounter poor quality unrelated to price, including: Unexpected outages Inexplicable fees and charges… Read More ▸

Consumer Policy Research Centre

The Home

Consumer Policy Research Centre

Living Online

Consumer Policy Research Centre

CPRC Annual Consumer Index

Consumer Policy Research Centre

Making Consumer Decisions Easier & Fairer

Consumer Policy Research Centre

When Things Go Wrong