Ask, don’t punish

We are all very familiar with how authorities like to punish citizens for any kind of wrong-doing.  Fines, tow trucks, arrests, warnings, police reports – you name it.  Different means of punishment are so widely used that it’s almost a norm.  Like there is no other way.  But here is an excellent example from the city of Copenhagen in Denmark.

If you park your bicycle illegally, the City will move it over to the bike racks. Instead of finger-wagging, they will then oil your chain, pump your tires and leave a little note on your bicycle asking to kindly use the bike racks in the future.

Brilliant!  And the best part is that the idea worked.

When the project started in April they were moving around 150 bicycles a day. Today that number has dropped to between 30 and 50.

One thought on “Ask, don’t punish”


  1. If this was done in Cyprus (assuming people used bikes):

    “When the project started in April they were moving around 150 bicycles a day. Today that number has increased to 1500.”

    :)

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