Introduction The "Punishment of Rewards" consists of twelve chapters. The first six chapters clarify the main points. The first chapter briefly reviews the behaviorist tradition, the prevalence of popular behaviorism in our society, and the reasons why popular behaviorism is widely accepted. Chapter 2 weighs some arguments about the inherent desirability of rewards. The article first challenges the claim that rewards are ethical and common sense, and then argues that rewards are actually offensive.
The first two chapters discuss philosophical speculation, and the third chapter discusses actual results. This chapter summarizes research evidence that rewards do not play a role in promoting long-term behavioral change and performance. In Chapters 4 and 5, I explain why this is the case, and put forward five key reasons for reward failures, which are tantamount to harsh criticism of rewards. Chapter 6 explores one form of reward that few of us would think of criticizing: praise.
The second half of The Penalties for Rewards deals with the three issues I have already mentioned: employee performance, student learning, children's behavior, exploring the effects of rewards and methods that can be used instead of rewards. The layout of this part is convenient for readers. If someone is only interested in one of the issues, there is no need to read through the discussion on the other two issues. Chapters 7 and 10 deal with workplace issues, Chapters 8 and 11 deal with education issues, and Chapters 9 and 12 deal with children's behavior and values (chapters related to teachers and parents).