George Loewenstein is the Herbert A. Simon University Professor of Economics and Psychology at Carnegie Mellon University. He is also Co-Director of the Center for Behavioral Decision Research at CMU and the Director of Behavioral Economics at the Center for Health Incentives at the Leonard Davis Institute of the University of Pennsylvania. He received his PhD from Yale University in 1985 and since then has held academic positions at the University of Chicago and Carnegie Mellon University, and fellowships at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, the Russell Sage Foundation, the Institute for Advanced Study (Wissenschaftskolleg) in Berlin, and the London School of Economics. He has served as President of the Society for Judgment and Decision Making, and as a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. His research focuses on applications of psychology to economics; specific interests include decision making over time, bargaining and negotiations, psychology and health, law and economics, the psychology of adaptation, the role of emotion in decision making, the psychology of curiosity, conflicts of interest, various aspects of sex, unethical behavior, and issues involving research ethics.
Loewenstein helped found and is a leader in the field of behavioral economics, along with neuroeconomics, and he was one of the early proponents of a new approach to public policy called, variously, “asymmetric” or “libertarian” paternalism. He has published over 200 journal articles in publications on economics, psychology, law, medicine, and other fields, written numerous book chapters, written or edited six books on topics ranging from intertemporal choice to behavioral economics and emotions, and served on the editorial boards of numerous journals in different fields. He has served on multiple National Academy of Science and Institute of Medicine panels and has advised numerous corporations and governmental organizations, including the NIH, USDA, U.K. Behavioural Insights Team, CVS Caremark, Ascension Health, McKinsey, NPD, Aramark, and many others. Loewenstein has served on and chaired numerous doctoral committees and taught intensive courses in behavioral economics at universities around the world. He has received numerous grants and awards, from government agencies such as the NIH, NSF, USDA, and from foundations, such as the John D. and Catherine T. McArthur Foundation, the Hewlett Foundation, the Russell Sage Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, and many others.
Article by George Loewenstein & Saurabh Bhargava
Making health plans simpler and more understandable to consumers will help them to make efficient decisions, thereby alleviating both the financial and psychological burdens of enrollment.