Field experiments, which are a powerful research technique, are common in some fields, but they have not been widely used in studying the effect of financial and counseling planning interventions. Financial services can benefit from the expanded use of field experiments to explore potential causal mechanisms for the effects of financial planning and counseling interventions. This article describes the value of field experiments as well as the potential problems with the approach, in this context. Researchers and practitioners in financial planning and counseling should explore opportunities to conduct field experiments, especially in situations where studies can be carefully designed and implemented in a standardized way with a sufficient number of people and where valid measures are available.

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