Sendhil Mullainathan is the Robert C. Waggoner Professor of Economics in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Harvard University. He has worked on poverty, behavioral economics and a wide variety of topics such as: the impact of poverty on mental bandwidth; whether CEO pay is excessive; using fictitious resumes to measure discrimination; showing that higher cigarette taxes makes smokers happier; modeling how competition affects media bias; and a model of coarse thinking. His latest research focuses on using machine learning to better understand human behavior.
He enjoys writing, having recently co-authored Scarcity: Why Having too Little Means so Much and writes regularly for the New York Times.
He helped co-found a non-profit to apply behavioral science (ideas42), co-founded a center to promote the use of randomized control trials in development (the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab), serves on the board of the MacArthur Foundation, and has worked in government in various roles, including most recently as Assistant Director of Research at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.