The Center for Advanced Hindsight started in 2007 by Dan Ariely. The team of post docs, research assistants and generally interesting people is primarily based in Durham North Carolina.
James B. Duke Professor of Psychology and Behavioral Economics at the Fuqua School of Business, Dan studies how people actually act in the marketplace, as opposed to how they should or would if they were rational beings. Dan’s bestselling books about behavioral economics include Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces that Shape Our Decisions, The Upside of Irrationality, The (Honest) Truth About Dishonesty, and most recently, Irrationally Yours: On Missing Socks, Pickup Lines, and Other Existential Puzzles.
Aaron was born in Memphis, TN and grew up in Greensboro, NC. Aaron graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill in 2014 where he majored in Economics BA, Psychology BS, and minored in Hebrew Language. Aaron’s research interests include self-control and procrastination. Aaron is a self-proclaimed biscuit connoisseur and insists that Memphis BBQ is the best. In his spare time, Aaron loves traveling, attending concerts, and tutoring well-behaved children.
Alev is originally from Turkey, and she spent most of her life as a medical doctor in Istanbul. While working, she tried to understand why people do what they do, but of course she couldn’t so she’s still looking for an answer. Alev likes books, wine, cooking, the TV show “Frasier” (she is on her 700th re-watching course), and she is an incurable fan of Douglas Adams, as well as Richard Feynman — that is why she wants to go at least to Tuva instead of “hitchhiking the galaxy” (known reasons).
Aline spent most of her time frolicking in the quaint city of Los Angeles until attending Reed College in Portland where she received a BA in Psychology with a minor in analytic people-watching and acute curiosity. In her free time, she enjoys balloons, living room dance parties and cooking with more vegetables than non-vegetables. She is overly attached to her umlaut.
Catherine J. Berman
Catherine grew up in New York City and graduated from Carleton College in Minnesota. She is fascinated by human behavior and passionate about using research insights to help make tangible improvements in the world. Her interests include medical decision making, the psychology of mortality and endings, scarcity, social norms, and dissent.
Conor grew up around Atlanta and went to the University of Georgia, where he graduated with a BA/MA degree in economics and a BS in mathematics. His interests broadly fall under choice architecture, decisions under uncertainty, statistical and experimental methodology, and time preferences. He also likes volunteering at a tea shop from time to time and biking around Durham in search of baked goods.
David Neal- Executive in Residence
David is the Managing Partner and Founder of Catalyst Behavioral Sciences – a research and consulting firm that specializes in applying psychology, cognitive science, behavioral economics and marketing sciences to understand and change consumer decision-making and behavior.
David holds a Ph.D in psychology and has published extensively in the areas of behavior change, attitudes and motivational processes, and consumer and social decision making. In the commercial world, his background has emphasized health interventions, new product development, product defection and retention, and trademark litigation research.
David has particular expertise in the formation and change of consumer and health habits. He has published extensively on this topic, and consults to Fortune 100 companies and the US Government on methods for changing and forming habits.
David’s research has been featured in a range of media outlets, including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Time Magazine, The LA Times, The Australian, The Independent, ABC News, Fox News, and MSNBC. He has also appeared on BBC radio, CBC radio in Canada, NPR in the US, German National Public Radio, and CBS News, among others.
In conjunction with Professor Wendy Wood, David writes a regular column on “The New Unconscious” for Psychology Today.
Emory was born in Ohio, grew up in Southern Illinois, and finished Le Tour de Midwest in Wisconsin, where he attended Beloit College. His work at CAH is primarily around translating research into practice, and he particularly focuses on how to use behavioral economics to improve financial products and services. Prior to CAH, Emory worked at Higher Achievement and on the research team at CFED, both in Washington, D.C. Outside of the Center, Emory can almost certainly be found enjoying anything to do with baseball, playing with his dog, or finishing his Masters in Public Policy at Duke.
Jamie Foehl is a researcher at Duke University in Dan Ariely’s lab – The Center for Advanced Hindsight (CAH). Her work at CAH focuses on the practical applications of Behavioral Economics with a focus on health and financial services. Jamie works with lab partners to develop and test behavioral-based interventions. Prior to joining the lab in 2011, Jamie worked in advertising. She graduated from Carleton College in 1999.
Jan Willem Lindemans
Jan Willem received his Ph.D. in Philosophy and M.A. in Law from the KU Leuven, in Belgium. Previously, he was a postdoctoral fellow at the Behavioral Ethics Lab, UPenn. He is interested in social norms, moral behavior, methodology of social science, and, more recently, apps that make people awesome. Since he is from Belgium and all over, he speaks more languages than he can immediately think of, including Python 2.7. print “!thgisdniH decnavdA ot emocleW”[::-1] For breakfast he has fries dipped in chocolate sauce and a strong ale. Santé!
Jeffrey Ubben- Irrational Fellow
Jeffrey W. Ubben is a Founder, Chief Executive Officer and the Chief Investment Officer of ValueAct Capital. Prior to founding ValueAct Capital in 2000, Mr. Ubben was a Managing Partner at Blum Capital Partners (“Blum”) for more than five years. Mr. Ubben is a director of Valeant Pharmaceuticals International and Willis Group Holdings plc, and a former chairman and director of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc., a former director of Acxiom Corp., Catalina Marketing Corp., Gartner Group, Inc., Insurance Auto Auctions, Inc., Mentor Corporation, Omnicare, Inc., Misys, plc, Per-Se Technologies, Inc., Sara Lee Corp. and several other public and private companies. In addition, Mr. Ubben serves as chairman of the national board of the Posse Foundation, is on the board of trustees of Northwestern University, and is also on the board of the American Conservatory Theater. He has a B.A. from Duke University and an M.B.A. from the J. L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University.
John Khoury- Irrational Fellow
John Khoury is the Founder and Managing Partner of Long Pond Capital, LP. Long Pond is a value oriented investment management firm based in New York, which focuses on investing in Real Estate and Real Estate Related Companies. The Firm implements a rigorous, bottom up research process across a broad investable universe to identify asymmetry, which is defined as a material disconnect between stock price and intrinsic value. Mr. Khoury oversees the research process and is responsible for managing all investment related efforts, including portfolio management and risk management.
Prior to founding Long Pond in 2010, Mr. Khoury was a Co-Managing Member and Co-Portfolio Manager at Wesley Capital Management, a New York based real estate hedge fund. Previously, Mr. Khoury served as a Senior Analyst at DLJ Real Estate Capital Partners, where he focused on real estate acquisitions throughout the United States. Mr. Khoury began his career at Lazard Frères in the Real Estate Investment Banking Group, where he worked on several notable REIT M&A transactions.
Mr. Khoury holds a Bachelor of Science in Economics from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.
Jingzhi “Hippo” Tan
Jingzhi received his BA in Life Sciences from Peking University and his Ph.D. in Evolutionary Anthropology from Duke University. At the Center for Advanced Hindsight, he has been comparing humans, bonobos and chimpanzees to understand the evolution of cooperation and xenophobia. Jingzhi is currently a postdoc in Evolutionary Anthropology at Duke University and at Zoo Atlanta.
Kristen founded Irrational Labs, a non-profit behavioral consulting company, with Dan Ariely in 2013. She helps companies and nonprofits understand and leverage behavioral economics to increase the health, wealth and happiness of their users.
Kristen also led the behavioral economics group at Google, a group that touches over 26 teams across Google, and hosts ones of the top behavioral change conferences globally, StartupOnomics. She co-authored a series of workbooks called Hacking Human Nature for Good: A practical guide to changing behavior, with Dan Ariely. These workbooks are being used at companies like Google, Intuit, Neflix, Fidelity, Lending Club for business strategy and design work.
Before designing, testing and scaling products that use behavioral economics, Kristen was a Sr. product manager at Intuit and camera startup, Lytro. She built product management and marketing systems for small businesses and consumers, for domestic and international markets, for mobile and web, working on front and back end systems. The core thread throughout this all is a deep passion for understanding why people behave the way they do and then building solutions that make their lives better.
Kristen is an advisor for Loop Commerce, Code For America Accelerator and the Genr8tor Incubator and has spoke at Google, Facebook, Fidelity, Equifax, Stanford, Bay Area Computer Human Interaction seminar and more.
Originally from Taiwan, Lee received his B.A. degree in Finance in Taiwan and his Master’s degree in Economics from Duke University. His research interest focuses on the cognitive processes underlying economic decision-making. Outside the world of science, he is a food explorer. He is fascinated by the major role that food plays in everyday life and is always insatiably curious about a variety of foods and enjoys nuances in taste.
M. R. Trower
Matt is a comic artist and illustrator with a dog named Evan Williams. Originally from Seattle, they have held onto a penchant for conifers and an aversion to umbrellas over the years. Matt is proud to make drawings inside (and sometimes outside) of boxes for a living. Matt earned their BFA in Illustration at Rhode Island School of Design, concentrating in Gender, Sexuality, and Race.
Marialejandra Guzman Cruz
Marialejandra is originally from the Dominican Republic (DR). She received her B.S. in Economics in the DR and her Master in Public Policy at Duke. At CAH, she works on financial inclusion projects that combine research, policy, and behavioral science. Prior to coming to Duke, she worked in education policy and program evaluation, topics that she is passionate about. In her free time, she likes to read and explore Durham.
Mariel mainly works on applications of behavioral research, primarily in the financial services sector and public policy arena. She holds a Master of Public Policy degree from Duke University. Her previous work experience includes Boulder County Housing and Human Services, Peace Corps-Dominican Republic, and Nagle & Associates, a consulting firm for nonprofits and charitable foundations. Originally from Idaho, Mariel enjoys riding bikes, walking in the woods, and watching minor-league baseball.
Megan grew up in Northern California where she received her BA in English Literature from the University of California, Santa Cruz. At the Center for Advanced Hindsight, she basically tries to keep Dan’s life organized. Outside of the Center, you’re likely to find her with her nose stuck in a book or at the record store.
Originally from Greece, Panos spends his time between the USA & Denmark. He is a visiting assistant professor of Behavioral Economics, aligned with three centers: the Center for Advanced Hindsight at Duke University, the Interacting Minds Centre, and the Interdisciplinary Centre for Organisational Architecture at Aarhus University. His research lies in the fields of Behavioural Economics & Anthropology, with a special interest in how rituals affect moral behavior and can be life-changing. He hopes that studying and understanding trust and cooperation will make the world a more caring place. He is married to Katerina Peterkova and when he rarely has free time he likes biking, cooking, and drinking wine with his friends. His most recent accomplishment is a little boy named Dimitrios.
Pat is very proud to have the title ‘senior member’ of the CAH Team – the oldest member in age, that is. She left the Transportation Service industry a few years ago, seeking an irrational way to begin life over again, and she found it here with the CAH team. In her spare time, she likes to think of names for new startups, such as the one she came up with for her daughter’s company several years ago – NetNerds. Pat works closely with Megan maintaining smooth sailing for Dan’s busy schedule.
Rachael was born and raised in Florida where she developed a deep love of sunshine and sandals. She really loves learning, as evidenced by her music degrees from the University of Florida and Indiana University, and her higher education student administration degree from NC State. Before coming to CAH, she worked with non-profits, social entrepreneurs, and universities and developed a passion for finding innovative solutions to difficult problems. In the lab, she is interested in team building, communication, and generally creating a fun place to work. She has a mild obsession with sloths.
Rachael is a proud born-and-raised Durhamite, spending a short stint in Chapel Hill that resulted in an Advertising degree from the UNC Journalism School. Her fascination with entrepreneurship was fostered by programs like the UNC Entrepreneurship Minor, Reese News Lab, and The Startup Factory. For now, she loves being on the support-side of startups, surrounding early stage companies with the resources and mentorship they need to succeed. Rachael’s necessary creative outlets include putting years of dance training to use, doing handstands wherever she pleases, and laughing at nearly everything.
Rebecca grew up in Durham before heading to New York to obtain her BA in history from New York University and a JD from American University. She recently returned to Durham after spending a few years living in Amman, Jordan. At the Center for Advanced Hindsight, she spends her time interpreting legal jargon and steering the Center around a great deal of bureaucratic red tape.
Sanyin Siang – Sr. Advisor
Sanyin is the Executive Director of the Coach K Leadership & Ethics Center (COLE) at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business. The center is a leadership laboratory that influences the development of all Fuqua Daytime MBA students, and creates think tank gatherings across sectors to explore today’s complex leadership challenges.
Her areas of expertise include behavioral sciences, talent development strategies, entrepreneurship, storytelling and design thinking applications to leading transformational organizational change.
Sanyin’s thought-leadership has appeared in Forbes, Fortune, The Wall Street Journal, and The Huffington Post. She is also a LinkedIn Influencer. She has advised and served on boards of startups, CEOs, USOC National Governing Board and coached executives globally across industries. She has spoken in venues from the White House to Generational W, and other academic institutions. She is a mom to 3 little ones and is currently working on a multi-media children’s series to empower girls as leaders, team players and problem-solvers.
Stephanie grew up in New Jersey and attended UNC-Chapel Hill where she majored in Psychology and minored in French and Sexuality Studies. She is interested in studying positive emotions and applying psychological research to broader intersecting social issues to create a more just world through behavioral and structural intervention. Outside of the lab, Stephanie plays in a band and explores the Triangle in search of the best coffeeshops and breakfast foods.
Steve Prince grew up in Rockaway Beach (the Ramones can hitch a ride there), NY and graduated from Cornell University. He received his PhD in Psychology from Duke University, studying human memory. In the world of science, Steve enjoys thinking about how humans think. Outside of science, he enjoys running and comedy, and trying to make his wife and kids laugh (while running before or after them).
Thomas Walichiewicz is a designer trained in the application of neuropsychological research and technology, seeking to improve the way products are designed. As the Senior Designer at Common Cents Lab, his focus is on designing and iterating products based on the principals of behavioral economics.
Previously, Thomas was a UX/UI designer at Lyra Health and Miti Health, where he took innovative products from early concepts through launch. As an advocate for rigorous testing, creative design, and personalized technology, Thomas tailors products for market fit, and believes in justifying his design decisions through research.
Thomas has conducted numerous IRB-approved research studies for U.C. Davis and San José State University, which led him to investigate ways of improving user experience by integrating intuitive design and psychological analysis.
Ting Jiang is an experimental economist by training, a philosopher at heart and a psychologist in action.
She was born and raised in Puning, educated in Tilburg, married in Brussels, met her city of love in Philadelphia, and felt home in the world.
Her toolbox contains eyetrackers, the mind games, food labels, nudges, social norms…
Her passion is in bridging – people, places, paradigms…She believes that the world would be a better place if we open our hearts and homes to each other.
Wendy De La Rosa
Wendy is the Lead Behavioral Strategist for Irrational Labs, a nonprofit organization co-founded by Dan Ariely that applies behavioral economics findings to product, marketing, and organizational design problems. She focuses on designing user and employee experiences using behavioral economic theories. She is also a research consultant for The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, where she collaborates with Dr. Adam Grant on research and application projects related to organizational behavior, employee motivation and burn-out.
In her spare time, Wendy leads two monthly behavioral economic reading and discussion series in New York City and San Francisco. She is also the writer of the behavioral economics blog, Madder Minds.
Prior to joining Irrational Labs, Wendy was an Associate on the investment team at Centerbridge Partners, a private investment firm that focuses on making private equity and credit investments. Before Centerbridge, she was on the investment team in the Private Equity Group at Goldman Sachs.
Wendy’s interest in behavioral economics started during her time at The Wharton School where she received a B.S. in Economics with a concentration in Management and Finance. She graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa.
Vlad grew up in a very small town in the woods of rural upstate New York and is probably a hipster. He got his B.S. in Psychology from Yale University in 2012, where he spent a lot of time doing campus radio and hopping around psychology and philosophy labs. He’s mostly vegan, and he’s broadly interested in moral conflict, moral conformity, and moral minorities. He mostly spends his time outside the lab really liking Durham and taking photos of his dog, Toad, who is great.
Aner Tal was born on a hot and balmy day in 1979 and has been trying to figure out how people work ever since. A native of Israel, Aner completed his BA in Economics and Accounting (1998), his Master’s in Business Administration / Marketing (2001), and for good measure his Master’s in Philosophy (2010) at Tel-Aviv University. He obtained his PhD in Behavioral Economics / Consumer Behavior from Duke University (2009), and subsequently completed his post-doc at Cornell (2013). These days Aner continues as a researcher at Cornell University, specializing in consumption experience, judgmental biases and behavior change, with a specific expertise in food and eating behavior. He has appeared in hundreds of media outlets in relation to his research and provides consulting services in marketing. In his spare time he dabbles in improvisation and partner acrobatics, and will one day be a good cook.
Born and raised in Durham, Anna continues to baffle her peers with her lack of southern accent. Her interests include medical decision making and quality of life issues in geriatric care. In her spare time, she enjoys impressing persons over 65 with her extensive knowledge of cinema and music from the pre-1960s era.
Cara grew up in Bethesda, Maryland. She received a BS in economics from Duke University, where she conducted research at CAH first as an undergraduate and then as a full-time lab member. She is curious about almost everything and has researched topics from medical decision-making to dishonesty and cheating to people’s relationships with natural products. Cara is currently pursuing a master’s degree in experimental psychology at the University of Bristol and is enjoying exploring sunny southwest England during her first experience living in a foreign country.
Born and raised in far, far Israel, Guy is the proud father of two wonderful kids: Boaz and Roi. Guy earned his PhD in Psychology at the Technion–Israel Institute of Technology. After completing a fertile post-doctoral fellowship at the Center for Advanced Hindsight, he returned to Israel and is now a senior lecturer at the Interdisciplinary Center (IDC), Herzliya. His research focuses on economic behavior, the cognitive processes underlying decision making, and the applications of decision-making research in real life settings.
Heather began her research training at the University of Waterloo, investigating a curious phenomenon known as time-space synaesthesia, and continued UBC, where she probed the depths of the brain using functional neuroimaging. As a Psychology PhD student at Duke, she is keen to explore how people’s perceptions and biases influence their real-world decisions and political attitudes. Outside of the lab, you might find her meditating, shopping for her next Halloween costume months in advance, or riding the bus.
For the last 15 years, Igal managed sales, marketing, merchandising and operations at the district, regional and corporate level for established retail franchises and manufacturing companies. He graduated from Derby University with a major in business management and is also an associate engineer in industrial management, with a major in marketing. He bridges the research center with organizations, acting as an ambassador for companies in the academic world.
Originally from New York, Janet’s moved progressively further south until landing in New Orleans, where she studies how to make it easier to resist temptation. Her qualifications include a PhD in psychology and lots of failed attempts.
Originally from New York City, Jared received his B.S. in Human Development from Cornell University and his Ph.D. in Marketing from Duke University. His main research focus is on the utility that consumers gain from experiences; more specifically, what types of utility consumers prefer to gain from experiences, and how consumers can maximize the utility that they gain from experiences. He is also interested in other areas of consumer judgment and decision-making, particularly those that involve behavioral economics.
Joe came to the lab by way of Singapore and Davidson College. Although he was a history major, Joe’s background in programming saw him assigned to the clinical psychology lab at Davidson, where he worked on arousal and decision-making research. From there, Joe went on to help run a startup, and then on to work for Dan where he worked for 4 years. Right now, Joe is getting his PhD in Consumer Behavior at the University of Colorado, where he studies financial decision-making, identity, and other topics that float across his field of vision. Joe is married to Susan Harvey, a pediatric nurse practitioner whose moral behavior licenses Joe to do whatever the heck he wants.
Kacie grew up on a ranch in New Mexico and received her BA in English and Communication from Texas A&M University. She earned a Master’s degree from NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program. After graduating, she spent a year as a resident at ITP, where she continued to pursue her research in interaction design and the emotional response of humans to cardboard robots.
Kirill arrived to Duke from sunny Florida and snowy Lithuania and studies Computer Science. Naturally, he codes a whole lot, while picnicking, entrepreneurialing, and friendling in his spare time.
After her post-doc at the Center, Lalin joined Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia as an Assistant Professor of Marketing. Originally from Istanbul, Lalin received her BA degree in Psychology from Brandeis University and her doctorate in Marketing from Harvard Business School. Lalin spends her days trying to understand social connections better. She then designs novel social interventions and incentives that help people improve their decisions so that they can lead healthier, happier and more productive lives. Once a professional swimmer, she can now be found running after a football, chronically dancing, following arts or flying. She deeply misses her days at the CAH.
Merve grew up in Istanbul where she received her BA and MA in Economics. She crossed the ocean and came to Duke in 2008 to pursue her PhD in Economics. In 2011, she met Dan and joined the lab.
Merve’s research interests span a broad area, tackling questions such as: How do beliefs about society influence support for social programs such as unemployment benefits? When are people more likely to cheat and why? Do religious rituals really have an effect on morality?
Currently she explores what drives motivation, particularly effects of monetary and nonmonetary rewards on motivation for long term tasks such as losing weight and saving for retirement. She uses lab experiments, online experiments, as well as large field experiments to collect data. She is passionate about applying insights from research into real world products and programs to help people turn their intentions (e.g. pay debt) into actions (cut spending).
Nina holds a B.A. from Brown University and a Ph.D. from University of Michigan. While at the Center for Advanced Hindsight, she pursued studies on moral psychology, emotions, personal identity, and humor. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at Yale University.
Sam joined the lab shortly after taking Dan’s class his senior year at Duke. While at CAH, Sam helped design and develop a number of the lab’s first apps, including the iPad app that it still uses to run cheating and conflict of interest experiments. Since graduating the lab, Sam has done iOS development and UI prototyping work at Microsoft, Google (via Nest), and currently at Apple.
Shahar earned his PhD in social psychology from Tel-Aviv University and spent a wonderful three years (2007-2010) in the Center for Advanced Hindsight. Shahar is currently a senior lecturer in the School of Psychology at IDC Herzliya and is one of the founders of DICE@IDC research center. His work and main research interests deal with heuristics and biases, financial decisions and dishonest behavior.
Stephen studies when consumers consider their opportunity costs. He grew up in northern Virginia and, before his residency at the CAH, received a BA in Psychology and Economics from UVA. After having to leave Duke upon graduation (PhD in Marketing), Stephen jumped coasts and landed at UCLA’s Anderson School where he is on the marketing faculty. In his non-research life, Stephen enjoys listening to bluegrass, getting his fix of NC barbecue, and telling people to get vaccinated.
Susan works at Thrivent Financial to help people with financial decisions. She moonlights doing behavioral economics research about infant nutrition in Asia and Africa. You can find her in Chicago, Washington D.C., or sometimes in Minneapolis, where she lives.
Troy graduated CAH in 2015 and is now a marketing professor at the University of Oregon. He grew up on the beaches of Southern California in the shadows of Hollywood making viral videos and trying to make the world a better place. He now conducts research on what people love, like, and find most important. From our favorite hobbies, to our most cherished beliefs, and yes, even the state of feeling nerdy, he studies what aspects affect us, how we can be better people, why we sometimes lie to ourselves, and how we can enjoy life more. As a former Disney Imagineer and a former activist-nonprofit marketer, he has seen the smiles and good that quality research can bring people.
Ximena worked as a research associate at the CAH for 2.5 years (2013-2015). While at the CAH, she studied how dishonesty varied across cultures, social networks and domains of life. She is now a Marketing Doctoral Student at Harvard Business School. Her main research interests include consumer behavior, consumer psychology, morality and decision-making.
Ximena is originally from Lima-Peru. After completing her undergraduate work in Peru, she has lived in several countries: France, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and now the USA. She has a BA in Business and a Master’s in Business Administration and Marketing. In her spare time, Ximena loves traveling to new places with her husband, taking cool photographs and enjoying Peruvian food.