Behavioral Economist Dan Ariely to Discuss Why We Act the Way We Do

Ariely is capstone speaker for RIT’s award-winning Visionaries in Motion IV series

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Dan Ariely

Best-selling author and noted behavioral economist Dan Ariely has earned national recognition for his examination of human behavior and how it impacts economics, politics and society in general. He will discuss his activities in the field and provide insights on why and how we act the way we do during an upcoming lecture at Rochester Institute of Technology.

Ariely, the James B. Duke Professor of Psychology and Economics at Duke University, will present “Who Put the Monkey in Driver’s Seat?” at 8 p.m. Sept. 29 in James E. Booth Hall’s Webb Auditorium. The event is part of RIT’s Visionaries in Motion IV speaker series sponsored by the Caroline Werner Gannett Project

As Mary Lynn Broe, the Caroline Werner Gannett Professor of the Humanities, notes: “Dan Ariely’s analysis of our misguided behaviors measures what he calls ‘our distance from perfection.’ Yet he is continually optimistic about strategies for changing those behaviors.”

Ariely is the author of the 2008 New York Times bestseller Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces that Shape Our Decisions and the 2010 book The Upside of Irrationality: The Unexpected Ways We Defy Logic at Work and at Home. Prior to joining Duke, he was the Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Behavioral Economics at MIT and currently serves as director of the eRationality Research Group at the MIT Media Lab.

The RIT Gannett Project’s “Visionaries in Motion” explores new connections across technologies, social sciences and humanities, increasing opportunities for interdisciplinary understanding and collaboration both on campus and in the Greater Rochester community. In 2009, the series was selected as City newspaper’s Critics’ Pick for “Best Lecture Series in Rochester.”