Classical economists often assume a model of human decision making which characterizes people as beings able to integrate all information around them, weigh the relativecosts and benefits of any and all decisions and actions, and capable of maximizing their utility in all situations. However, despite the explanatory power of these models, in real life, we often find that people don't always adhere to the identity of the homoeconomicus. Instead, people can sometimes act inconsistently, exhibit systematic biases, and generally act in unexpected ways.This presentation will provide attendees with an introduction to the behavioral sciences (behavioral economics andpsychology) and discuss the importance of understanding the context and utilizing behavioral design in developing interventions to do social good. This presentation will touch on many different domains including financial inclusion, agriculture, and nutrition amongst others.
Alex Blau is a Vice President at ideas42 currently focusing on challenges in consumer finance, design and decision-making, and international development. Prior to joining ideas42, Alex worked as a research analyst at Tufts University’s Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, examining the exit-strategies of a number of large, Title-II funded integrated nutrition interventions in Kenya. In addition, Alex has extensive experience developing agricultural supply chains for small-scale organic farmers in the Caribbean. Alex holds an MSc in food policy and applied nutrition science from Tufts University, and a BA in political science with a focus in international relations from Brown University.