Nina Mazar

Professor, Marketing

I’m a behavioral scientist dedicated to advancing the science and practice of behavior change, focusing on topics ranging from consumer behavior to ethics to social & environmental impact.

I am part of the Thinkers50 Radar Class of 2023, was named one of “The 40 Most Outstanding B-School Profs Under 40 In The World” (Poets&Quants, 2014), and am a former president of the academic Society for Judgment and Decision Making.

In a nutshell, I investigate how cues in the environment affect how we think about products, prices, work, donations, and morality, and their implications for business, welfare, development, and policy. My research topics range from irrational attractions to free products to the paradoxes of green behavior, organ and blood donations, tax compliance, debt management, health equity, and misinformation.

I was nominated for the SSHRC Aurora Prize for “Outstanding New Researcher” in Canada, and am the recipient of several teaching and research awards, including the William F. O’Dell Award of AMA’s Journal of Marketing Research (for having made the most significant, long-term contribution to marketing theory, methodology, and/or practice), and, most recently, the 2023 Financial Times Responsible Business Education Award (for my co-authored work on nudging organ donor registrations).

I have published my research in leading academic journals like the Journal of Marketing Research, Journal of Marketing, Psychological Sciences, Review of Economic Studies, and the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Popular accounts of my work have appeared among others on NPR, BBC, in the New York Times, Financial Times, Wired, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, and Harvard Business Review, and my research has been featured in various New York Times bestsellers including Drive by Daniel Pink as well as Predictably Irrational, The Upside of Irrationality, The (Honest) Truth about Dishonesty, and Money and Sense by Dan Ariely.

Public engagements/talks include the Canada Revenue Agency, European Commission, Department of State, World Bank, OECD, Toyota, Google Ventures, BEworks, and IDEO.

Most recently, I acted as the senior behavioral scientist of the World Bank’s behavioral insights team (eMBeD) in Washington DC, which I helped initiate and I co-directed the Behavioral Economics in Action research center at Rotman (BEAR) – the first academic center in Canada dedicated to applying behavioral science to policy and organizations — as well as the Susilo Institute for Ethics in the Global Economy at Questrom.

I have been serving as advisor on boards of various governments and organizations. Past engagements include the Privy Council Office Innovation Hub for Behavioral Economics in Canada, the Austrian Minister for Family and Youth, Irrational Labs in San Francisco, CA, and the Martin Prosperity Institute with director Roger Martin, named the world’s #1 management thinker by Thinkers50).

Before joining academia I worked with a spin-off of KPMG as a management consultant in Germany. Before becoming a professor, I was a post-doctoral associate and lecturer in marketing at MIT Sloan School of Management and the MIT Media Lab eRationality Group. I’m also an alumni of the German Academic Scholarship Foundation (Studienstiftung des Deutschen Volkes).

    Education
  • PhD equivalent (Dr. rer. pol.), Johannes Gutenberg-University Mainz, 2003
    Publications
  • Hertwig, R., Mazar, N. (2022). "Toward a taxonomy and review of honesty interventions", CURRENT OPINION IN PSYCHOLOGY, 47
  • Madan, S., Johar, G., Berger, J., Chandon, P., Chandy, R., Hamilton, R., John, L., Labroo, A., Liu, P., Lynch, J., Mazar, N., Mead, N., Mittal, V., Moorman, C., Norton, M., Roberts, J., Soman, D., Viswanathan, M., White, K. (2022). "Reaching for rigor and relevance: better marketing research for a better world", MARKETING LETTERS
  • Mazar, N. (2022). "Offering facts can improve COVID vaccine uptake", NATURE, 606 (7914), 471-472
  • Soman, D., Mazar, N. (2022). "Six Prescriptions for Applied Behavioral Science as It Comes of Age", Behavioral Scientist
  • (2022). "Behavioral Science in the Wild", University of Toronto Press
  • Milkman, K., Gandhi, L., Patel, M., Graci, H., Gromet, D., Ho, H., Kay, J., Lee, T., Rothschild, J., Bogard, J., Brody, I., Chabris, C., Chang, E., Chapman, G., Dannals, J., Goldstein, N., Goren, A., Hershfield, H., Hirsch, A., Hmurovic, J., Horn, S., Karlan, D., Kristal, A., Lamberton, C., Meyer, M., Oakes, A., Schweitzer, M., Shermohammed, M., Talloen, J., Warren, C., Whillans, A., Yadav, K., Zlatev, J., Berman, R., Evans, C., Ladhania, R., Ludwig, J., Mazar, N., Mullainathan, S., Snider, C., Spiess, J., Tsukayama, E., Ungar, L., van den Bulte, C., Volpp, K., Duckworth, A. (2022). "A 680,000-person megastudy of nudges to encourage vaccination in pharmacies", PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, 119 (6)
  • Robitaille, N., House, J., Mazar, N. (2021). "Effectiveness of Planning Prompts on Organizations' Likelihood to File Their Overdue Taxes: A Multi-Wave Field Experiment", MANAGEMENT SCIENCE, 67 (7), 4327-4340
  • Robitaille, N., House, J., Mazar, N. (2021). "Effectiveness of Planning Prompts on Organizations’ Likelihood to File Their Overdue Taxes: A Multi-Wave Field Experiment", Management Science, 67 (7), 4327-4340
  • Mazar, N., Robitaille, N., House, J. (2021). "Are Repeat Nudges Effective? For Tardy Tax Filers, It Seems So", Behavioral Scientist
  • Robitaille, N., Mazar, N., Tsai, C., Haviv, A., Hardy, E. (2021). "Increasing Organ Donor Registrations with Behavioral Interventions: A Field Experiment", JOURNAL OF MARKETING, 85 (3), 168-183
  • Gauri, V., Jamison, J., Mazar, N., Ozier, O. (2021). "Motivating bureaucrats through social recognition: External validity?A tale of two states*", ORGANIZATIONAL BEHAVIOR AND HUMAN DECISION PROCESSES, 163 117-131
  • Mazar, N., Robitaille, N., House, J. (2021). "Do Behavioral Nudges Work on Organizations?", Harvard Business Review
  • Mazar, N. (2021). "How Diversity and Inclusion Initiatives can Benefit from Behavioral Science", BEworks Choice Architecture Report 2021
    Research Presentations
  • Ladhania, R. , Lyle, U. , Mazar, N. Personalized Treatment Assignment Rules for Vaccine Uptake in Behavioral Science Field Experiments with Large Multi-Arm Trials, 2022 Conference on Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and Business Analytics, Cambridge, MA, 2022
  • Ladhania, R. , Mazar, N. , Ungar, L. Personalized Treatment Assignment Rules for Vaccine Uptake in Behavioral Science Field Experiments with Large Multi-Arm Trials, 2022 Conference on Digital Experimentation (CoDE), MIT, Cambridge, MA, 2022
  • Alp Boz, H. , Bahrami, M. , Balcisoy, S. , Bozkaya, B. , Mazar, N. , Nichols, A. , Pentland, S. Neighborhood Resilience and Fragility to the COVID-19 Pandemic from a Mobility Network Perspective: The Case of New York City, IC2S2-22, Chicago, IL, 2022
  • Mazar, N. People do not generally object to experiments, they are just sensitive to contexts, SDMS 2022 organized by Yale SOM, Barcelona, Spain, 2022
  • Ladhania, R. , Mazar, N. , Ungar, L. Health Equity: Increasing Vaccine Uptake During the COVID-19 Pandemic With a Focus on Under-Represented Minorities in the USA, American Causal Inference Conference, Berkeley, 2022
  • Mazar, N. Organ Donor Registrations, Marketing Seminar Speaker Series, IESE, Barcelona, Spain, 2022
  • Mazar, N. People do not seem to generally object to experiments, but to “just” be sensitive to contexts, Marketing Seminar Speaker Series, ESADE, Barcelona, Spain, 2022
  • Mazar, N. Organ Donor Registrations, INSEAD Marketing Department Seminar Speaker Series, Fontainebleau, France, 2022
  • Mazar, N. Behavioral Insights for Public Good, Behavioral Insights Career Expo 2022, Harvard Kennedy School, Harvard University, 2022
  • Mazar, N. Behavioral Science in the Wild: Getting individuals and organizations to pay their overdue taxes - what works and what doesn’t, UBC Decision Insights for Business & Society, Canada, 2022
  • House, J. , Lacetera, N. , Macis, M. , Mazar, N. Engaging the Middle Person: The Effect of Providing Performance Feedback to Customer Representatives on Organ Donor Registrations, SJDM 2021 (held in 2/22), Zoom, 2022
  • Cadario, R. , Mazar, N. , Nichols, A. The Impact of Ethical Company Ratings on Consumer Behavior, SJDM 2021 (held in 2/22), Zoom, 2022
  • Lee, C. , Mazar, N. , Morewedge, C. Are Preference Reversals due to Decision Contexts or Elicitation Procedures?, SJDM 2021 (held in 2/22), Zoom, 2022
  • Ariely, D. , Feldman, Y. , Mazar, N. , Pe'er, E. Honesty Pledges Reduce Cheating Through Involvement and Identification, SJDM 2021 (held in 2/22), Zoom, 2022
    Awards and Honors
  • 2023, Responsible Business Education Award, Financial Times
  • 2023, Thinkers50 Radar Class of 2023
  • 2022, Best Book of the Year, Habit Weekly
  • 2022, Notable Book of 2022, Behavioral Scientist
  • 2022, AMA/Marketing Science Institute, Finalist for H. Paul Root Award
  • 2022, SSRN Top 10% of Authors by all-time downloads
  • 2021, McCombe Research Award, Boston University
  • 2021, SSRN Top 10% of Authors by all-time downloads
  • 2020, Research mentioned in Journal of Marketing lead article as example for "boundary breaking, marketing-relevant consumer research"
  • 2020, Journal of Consumer Psychology (JCP), 10% Most Downloaded Papers published in 2018-2019
  • 2020, SSRN Top 10% of Authors by all-time downloads