Please note that this agenda is subject to change.
Sunday, June 5th
Location: Harvard Kennedy School (Taubman Building, Fifth Floor)
5:00-7:00 PM: Opening Reception
Welcome to BX2016! For any early arrivals, join us for a casual reception to mingle with attendees and collect your registration materials.
Monday, June 6th
Location: Harvard Business School
The first day of BX2016 will focus on new and emerging research from a range of fields that matter most to academics and policy-makers. We’ll kick off with a welcome from Behavioral Insights Group Assistant Director Abigail Dalton, and follow with a plenary tackling one of the most pressing issues we can address with behavioral science. Then, join a breakout to learn about what’s on the minds of leading researchers across a variety of fields, and for lively discussions with conference attendees and panelists looking to learn about new research that they can take back to their governments and organizations.
8:00-8:45 AM: Registration and Breakfast (Spangler Atrium)
8:45-9:00 AM: Welcome (Spangler Auditorium)
Few issues are as widely detrimental as implicit biases that create homogeneity of populations and ideas. The lessons we can take from behavioral science to improve diversity across organizations matter to us all. Hear from leading scholars in the field about what we can do to make diversity work.
9:45-10:30 AM: Breakout Introductions (Spangler Auditorium)
Join us for a preview of all morning breakout sessions before heading to your pre-selected topic area breakout.
10:30-11:15 AM: Break
11:15 AM-12:45 PM: Breakouts
12:45-2:00 PM: Lunch (Meredith and Williams Rooms)
2:00-2:45 PM: Breakout Introductions (Spangler Auditorium)
This will be just like our morning session; you’ll hear about the newest research and ideas from a variety of fields before heading to your breakout.
2:45-3:30 PM: Break
3:30-5:00 PM: Breakouts
5:00 PM: Reception (Meredith and Williams Rooms)
Tuesday, June 7th
Location: Harvard Business School
The second day of BX2016 will focus on policy-making. Building on Monday's programming, policy-makers at every level - those starting up a new behavioral science unites, those taking stock of the work of many years, and those thinking about the complex next steps they're confronting - will speak to their biggest questions, lessons learned, and new ideas on the horizon.
8:00-8:45 AM: Breakfast (Outside Spangler Auditorium)
8:45-9:00 AM: Recap and Second Day Format (Spangler Auditorium)
Some of the most important leaders applying behavioral science to policy will discus the work of their organizations and the biggest questions they’re confronting as their scope grows and changes.
10:00-10:30 AM: Break
10:30-11:45 AM: Breakouts
The Behavioral Economics of Online Platforms: Alessandro Acquisti, Ginger Jin, Mike Luca (Aldrich Hall 012)
Over the past decade there has been a dramatic rise in online businesses. Twitter and Facebook change the way we communicate, as TripAdvisor and Yelp give us access to more information than ever before. Platforms such as Uber and Airbnb have created markets that previously didn’t exist. This has given rise to new opportunities and new challenges. This session discusses these challenges, from the perspective of regulators, users, and the designers of online platforms.
Emerging Units: Liz Hardy, Michael Hiscox, Michael Sanders, Andrea Schneider (Aldrich Hall 011)
As the number of behavioral science units grows worldwide, more and more federal-level units are emerging, with their own unique governmental landscapes to traverse. Representatives from Australia, Canada, and Germany will discuss the challenges and opportunities they’ve faced as they work to make behavioral science an important part of federal policy.
Institutionalizing Experimentation in Policy-Making: Nadine Dechausay, John Floretta, Rachel Glennerster, Arianna Legovini (Aldrich Hall 010)
With government officials seeking rigorous evidence to inform their decision-making, there is an increasing need to institutionalize experimentation within governments and to formalize partnerships between governments and researchers. This breakout session will focus on the experience of those who have been involved in efforts to institutionalize the use and generation of rigorous evidence. Participants will share their perspectives on how these relationships have changed the ways that policies are designed and implemented, as well as the challenges associated both with launching and institutionalizing these partnerships.
The Promise and Pitfalls of Behavioral Science at Scale - Perspectives from the World Bank: Karla Gonzalez Carvajal, Julian Jamison, Nina Mazar, Rafael Mazer, Sanjay Mitra (Aldrich Hall 009)
Following the 2015 World Development Report “Mind, Society, and Behavior,” the World Bank has started to systematically apply rigorous evidence from behavioral science to make its development interventions more effective. In this panel – moderated by the World Bank’s new Global INsights Initiative (GINI) – we talk with World Bank operational managers and their government/policy-making counterparts about the promises and pitfalls and the challenges and opportunities in the quest for more behaviorally-informed development policy.
11:45 AM-1:15 PM: Lunch and Junior Scholars Poster Session (Meredith and Williams Rooms)
1:15-2:30 PM: Breakouts
The Quantified City: Edward Glaeser, Julia Lane, Elizabeth Linos, Mike Luca, Will Tucker (Aldrich Hall 012)
In the last decade, a range of new data sources and empirical tools have become available to city policy makers. This session discusses new insights from, and best practices for, incorporating data, experiments, and behavioral insights into city policy.
Smart Scaling: Hunt Allcott, Stefan Hunt, Mary Ann O’Loughlin, Josh Wright (Aldrich Hall 011)
Applying behavioral science to policy isn’t just about growing and replicating – it’s about approaching the complex landscape of policy as governments become more familiar with our work, and as we learn that finding the “low-hanging fruit” isn’t the only option. Learn how academics and organizations confront increasing complexity to scale their work across a variety of sectors.
Government Policy and Practice Through the Behavioral Insights Lens: Elspeth Kirkman, Kok Ping Soon, Owain Service (Aldrich Hall 010)
The Behavioural Insights Team and the Singapore Ministry of Manpower, Public Service Division, and Ministry of Home Affairs are leaders in the field of applying and scaling behavioral science across all levels of government. Hear about their work to date, and what they’re working on as they look ahead.
The Why and the What for Public Officials: Filippo Cavassini, Joana Sousa Lourenco, Faisal Naru, Xavier Troussard (Aldrich Hall 009)
In “The Why,” the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) will present the results of their recent work on the Colombian telecommunication market; The Joint Research Centre (JRC) will present some examples of successful application of behavioral insights in the European Commission (EC) tapping into three different approaches (decision-making, regulation, and funding). In “The What,” presentations will illustrate select examples of behavioral initiatives (tested or not). The focus will be on what works and conditions for each.
2:30-3:00 PM: Break
3:00-3:40: How We Talk About Nudging: A Conversation with Cass Sunstein (Spangler Auditorium)
The virtues of behavioral science aren’t a given in all circles; as the field grows in reach and popularity, academics and policy-makers alike are confronting criticisms of the field and its effectiveness. Cass Sunstein has written extensively on how to respond to these criticisms, and in conversation with Kate Glazebrook, will discuss how we can effectively push back and demonstrate the importance of the field.
We close with a return to academia. Rachel Glennerster, David Laibson, and Eldar Shafir will take us beyond nudging, with a deep dive into some of the most important questions academics and policy-makers face.
4:40-5:00 PM: Awards and Close (Spangler Auditorium)
We’ll wrap up the day with the awards for our Junior Scholars, and a thank you to all in attendance.