• <div class="header-image" style="background-image: url(/live/image/gid/4/2441_V5N9Header.rev.1508162078.jpg);">​</div><div class="header-background-color"/>

Katherine L. Milkman

Katherine Milkman is an Assistant Professor at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. Her research relies heavily on “big data” to document various ways in which individuals systematically deviate from making optimal choices. Her work has paid particular attention to the question of what factors produce self-control failures (e.g., under-saving for retirement, exercising too little, eating too much junk food) and how to reduce the incidence of such failures. To watch Katherine give a 5-minute presentation about her research on motivating exercise, click here. She has also explored race and gender discrimination, focusing on how a decision’s context can alter the manifestation of bias. And, she has examined what types of stories are published in The New Yorker as well as what New York Timesstories and science stories are most widely shared (to see a presentation about what types of science stories spread, click here).

Katherine has published nearly two dozen articles in leading social science journals such as Management Science, the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, and Psychological Science. She is also an Associate Editor for the Behavioral Economics Department at Management Science and a member of the Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes Editorial Board.

Katherine has worked with numerous companies on research and/or consulting including Evive Health, Quickflix, Google, the American Red Cross, Cummins Engines, Wipro, HelloWallet, and StickK. In addition, her work has been featured by media outlets such as The New York Times, The International Herald Tribune, BusinessWeek, The Economist, NPR, and Harvard Business Review.

In 2011, Katherine was recognized as one of the top 40 business school professors under 40 by Poets and Quants, and in 2013 she was voted Wharton’s “Iron Prof” by the school’s MBA students.

Katherine received her undergraduate degree from Princeton University (summa cum laude) in Operations Research and Financial Engineering and her Ph.D. from Harvard University’s joint program in Computer Science and Business.

Education

Ph.D., Information, Technology & Management 2009; Business School & School of Engineering and Applied Science, Harvard University B.S.E., Summa cum Laude, Operations Research & Financial Engineering 2004; Certificate in American Studies Princeton University

Title(s)

James G. Campbell, Jr. Assistant Professor of Operations and Information Management

School(s)

Wharton

Department(s)

Operations and Information Management Department

Twitter Handle

Publications

John Beshears, Shlomo Benartzi, Richard T. Mason, Katherine L. Milkman (2017). How Do Consumers Respond When Default Options Push the Envelope?, Working Paper.

Shlomo Benartzi, John Beshears, Katherine L. Milkman, et al (2017). Should Government Invest More in Nudging?, Psychological Science, Research Article.

John Beshears, Katherine L. Milkman, Joshua Schwartzstein (2016). Beyond Beta-Delta: The Emerging Economics of Personal Plans, American Economic Review Papers & Proceedings.

Bradley Staats, Hengchen Dai, David Hofmann, Katherine L. Milkman (2016). Motivating Process Compliance through Electronic Monitoring: The Benefits and Limitations of Electronic Monitoring on Hand Hygiene in Healthcare, Management Science.

Katherine L. Milkman, Todd Rogers (2016). Reminders Through Association, Psychological Science.

Jihae Shin, Katherine L. Milkman (2016). How backup plans can harm goal pursuit: The unexpected downside of being prepared for failure, Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 135.  

Todd Rogers, Katherine L. Milkman, Leslie John, Michael Norton (2015). Beyond good intentions: Prompting people to make plans improves follow-through on important tasks, Behavioral Science & Policy, 1 (2), 33 - 41.  

Katherine L. Milkman, Modupe Akinola, Dolly Chugh (2015). What Happens Before? A Field Experiment Exploring How Pay and Representation Differentially Shape Bias on the Pathway into Organizations, Journal of Applied Psychology, 100 (6), 1678 - 1712.  

Katherine L. Milkman, Hengchen Dai, Jason Riis (2015). Put Your Imperfections Behind You: Goal Initiation Is Motivated by Temporal Landmarks that Signal the Beginning of New Time Periods, Psychological Science, 26 (12), 1927 - 1936.  

John Beshears, James J. Choi, David Laibson, Brigitte C. Madrian, Katherine L. Milkman (2015). The Effect of Providing Peer Information on Retirement Savings Decisions, The Journal of Finance, 70 (3), 1161 - 1201.  

Hengchen Dai, Katherine L. Milkman, David Hofmann, Bradley Staats (2015). The Impact of Time at Work and Time off from Work on Rule Compliance: The Case of Hand Hygiene in Healthcare, Journal of Applied Psychology, 100 (3), 846 - 862.

Brad Bitterly, Robert Mislavsky, Hengchen Dai, Katherine L. Milkman (2015). Want-Should Conflict: A Synthesis of Past Research, in The Psychology of Desire, 244 - 264.  

Hengchen Dai, Katherine L. Milkman, Jason Riis (2014). The Fresh Start Effect: Temporal Landmarks Motivate Aspirational Behavior, Management Science, 60 (10), 2563 - 2582.  

Todd Rogers, Katherine L. Milkman, Kevin Volpp (2014). Commitment Devices: Using Initiatives to Change Behavior, Journal of the American Medical Association, 311 (20), 2065 - 2066.

Todd Rogers, Katherine L. Milkman, Kevin Volpp (2014). Commitment Devices to Improve Unhealthy Behaviors: In Reply, Journal of the American Medical Association, 312 (15), 1592 - 1593.  

Katherine L. Milkman, J. Beshears, J.J. Choi, D. Laibson, B.C. Madrian (2013). Planning Prompts as a Means of Increasing Preventive Screening Rates, Preventive Medicine, 56, 92 - 93.

Hengchen Dai, Katherine L. Milkman, John Beshears, James J. Choi, David Laibson and Brigitte Madrian (2012). Planning Prompts as a Means of Increasing Rates of Immunization and Preventive Screening, Public Policy & Aging Report, 22(4), 16-19.  

Katherine L. Milkman, Mary Carol Mazza, Lisa L. Shu, Chia-Jung Tsay, Max H. Bazerman (2012). Policy Bundling to Overcome Loss Aversion: A Method for Improving Legislative Outcomes, Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 117, 158 - 167. 

Katherine L. Milkman (2012). Unsure What the Future Will Bring? You May Over-Indulge: Uncertainty Increases the Appeal of Wants over Shoulds, Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 119, 163 - 176.  

Kathleen McGinn, Katherine L. Milkman, Markus Noth (2012). Walking the Talk in Multiparty Bargaining: An Experimental Investigation, Journal of Economic Psychology, 33, 278 - 291.  

Katherine L. Milkman, John Beshears, James J. Choi, David Laibson, Brigitte C. Madrian (2011). Using Implementation Intentions Prompts to Enhance Influenza Vaccination Rates, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 108, 10415 - 10420. 

Beshears, Katherine L. Milkman (2011). Do Sell-Side Stock Analysts Exhibit Escalation of Commitment?, Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 77, 304 - 317.

PENN WHARTON PPI
RESOURCE SPOTLIGHT:

  • <h3>National Bureau of Economic Research (Public Use Data Archive)</h3><p><img width="180" height="43" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/4/width/180/height/43/478_nber.rev.1407530465.jpg" class="lw_image lw_image478 lw_align_right" data-max-w="329" data-max-h="79"/>Founded in 1920, the <strong>National Bureau of Economic Research</strong> is a private, nonprofit, nonpartisan research organization dedicated to promoting a greater understanding of how the economy works. The NBER is committed to undertaking and disseminating unbiased economic research among public policymakers, business professionals, and the academic community.</p><p> Quick Link to <strong>Public Use Data Archive</strong>: <a href="http://www.nber.org/data/" target="_blank">http://www.nber.org/data/</a></p><p>See all <a href="/data-resources/">data and resources</a> »</p>
  • <h3>HUD State of the Cities Data Systems</h3><p><strong><img width="200" height="200" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/4/width/200/height/200/482_hud_logo.rev.1407788472.jpg" class="lw_image lw_image482 lw_align_left" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/4/width/200/height/200/482_hud_logo.rev.1407788472.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/4/width/200/height/200/482_hud_logo.rev.1407788472.jpg 3x" data-max-w="612" data-max-h="613"/>The SOCDS provides data for individual Metropolitan Areas, Central Cities, and Suburbs.</strong> It is a portal for non-national data made available through a number of outside institutions (e.g. Census, BLS, FBI and others).</p><p> Quick link: <a href="http://www.huduser.org/portal/datasets/socds.html" target="_blank">http://www.huduser.org/portal/datasets/socds.html</a></p><p>See all <a href="/data-resources/">data and resources</a> »</p>
  • <h3>The World Bank Data (U.S.)</h3><p><img width="130" height="118" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/4/width/130/height/118/484_world-bank-logo.rev.1407788945.jpg" class="lw_image lw_image484 lw_align_left" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/4/width/130/height/118/484_world-bank-logo.rev.1407788945.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/4/width/130/height/118/484_world-bank-logo.rev.1407788945.jpg 3x" data-max-w="1406" data-max-h="1275"/>The <strong>World Bank</strong> provides World Development Indicators, Surveys, and data on Finances and Climate Change.</p><p> Quick link: <a href="http://data.worldbank.org/country/united-states" target="_blank">http://data.worldbank.org/country/united-states</a></p><p>See all <a href="/data-resources/">data and resources</a> »</p>
  • <h3>Federal Aviation Administration: Accident & Incident Data</h3><p><img width="100" height="100" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/4/width/100/height/100/80_faa-logo.rev.1402681347.jpg" class="lw_image lw_image80 lw_align_left" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/4/width/100/height/100/80_faa-logo.rev.1402681347.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/4/width/100/height/100/80_faa-logo.rev.1402681347.jpg 3x" data-max-w="550" data-max-h="550"/>The NTSB issues an accident report following each investigation. These reports are available online for reports issued since 1996, with older reports coming online soon. The reports listing is sortable by the event date, report date, city, and state.</p><p> Quick link: <a href="http://www.faa.gov/data_research/accident_incident/" target="_blank">http://www.faa.gov/data_research/accident_incident/</a></p><p>See all <a href="/data-resources/">data and resources</a> »</p>
  • <h3>National Center for Education Statistics</h3><p><strong><img width="400" height="80" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/4/width/400/height/80/479_nces.rev.1407787656.jpg" class="lw_image lw_image479 lw_align_right" data-max-w="400" data-max-h="80"/>The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) is the primary federal entity for collecting and analyzing data related to education in the U.S. and other nations.</strong> NCES is located within the U.S. Department of Education and the Institute of Education Sciences. NCES has an extensive Statistical Standards Program that consults and advises on methodological and statistical aspects involved in the design, collection, and analysis of data collections in the Center. To learn more about the NCES, <a href="http://nces.ed.gov/about/" target="_blank">click here</a>.</p><p> Quick link to NCES Data Tools: <a href="http://nces.ed.gov/datatools/index.asp?DataToolSectionID=4" target="_blank">http://nces.ed.gov/datatools/index.asp?DataToolSectionID=4</a></p><p> Quick link to Quick Tables and Figures: <a href="http://nces.ed.gov/quicktables/" target="_blank">http://nces.ed.gov/quicktables/</a></p><p> Quick link to NCES Fast Facts (Note: The primary purpose of the Fast Facts website is to provide users with concise information on a range of educational issues, from early childhood to adult learning.): <a href="http://nces.ed.gov/fastfacts/" target="_blank">http://nces.ed.gov/fastfacts/#</a></p><p>See all <a href="/data-resources/">data and resources</a> »</p>
  • <h3>NOAA National Climatic Data Center</h3><p><img width="200" height="198" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/4/width/200/height/198/483_noaa_logo.rev.1407788692.jpg" class="lw_image lw_image483 lw_align_left" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/4/width/200/height/198/483_noaa_logo.rev.1407788692.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/4/width/200/height/198/483_noaa_logo.rev.1407788692.jpg 3x" data-max-w="954" data-max-h="945"/>NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) is responsible for preserving, monitoring, assessing, and providing public access to the Nation’s treasure of <strong>climate and historical weather data and information</strong>.</p><p> Quick link to home page: <a href="http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/" target="_blank">http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/</a></p><p> Quick link to NCDC’s climate and weather datasets, products, and various web pages and resources: <a href="http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/data-access/quick-links" target="_blank">http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/data-access/quick-links</a></p><p> Quick link to Text & Map Search: <a href="http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/cdo-web/" target="_blank">http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/cdo-web/</a></p><p>See all <a href="/data-resources/">data and resources</a> »</p>
  • <h3>MapStats</h3><p> A feature of FedStats, MapStats allows users to search for <strong>state, county, city, congressional district, or Federal judicial district data</strong> (demographic, economic, and geographic).</p><p> Quick link: <a href="http://www.fedstats.gov/mapstats/" target="_blank">http://www.fedstats.gov/mapstats/</a></p><p>See all <a href="/data-resources/">data and resources</a> »</p>
  • <h3>The Penn World Table</h3><p> The Penn World Table provides purchasing power parity and national income accounts converted to international prices for 189 countries/territories for some or all of the years 1950-2010.</p><p><a href="https://pwt.sas.upenn.edu/php_site/pwt71/pwt71_form.php" target="_blank">Quick link.</a> </p><p>See all <a href="/data-resources/">data and resources</a> »</p>
  • <h3>Internal Revenue Service: Tax Statistics</h3><p><img width="155" height="200" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/4/width/155/height/200/486_irs_logo.rev.1407789424.jpg" class="lw_image lw_image486 lw_align_left" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/4/width/155/height/200/486_irs_logo.rev.1407789424.jpg 2x" data-max-w="463" data-max-h="596"/>Find statistics on business tax, individual tax, charitable and exempt organizations, IRS operations and budget, and income (SOI), as well as statistics by form, products, publications, papers, and other IRS data.</p><p> Quick link to <strong>Tax Statistics, where you will find a wide range of tables, articles, and data</strong> that describe and measure elements of the U.S. tax system: <a href="http://www.irs.gov/uac/Tax-Stats-2" target="_blank">http://www.irs.gov/uac/Tax-Stats-2</a></p><p>See all <a href="/data-resources/">data and resources</a> »</p>
  • <h3>Federal Reserve Economic Data (FRED®)</h3><p><strong><img width="180" height="79" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/4/width/180/height/79/481_fred-logo.rev.1407788243.jpg" class="lw_image lw_image481 lw_align_right" data-max-w="222" data-max-h="97"/>An online database consisting of more than 72,000 economic data time series from 54 national, international, public, and private sources.</strong> FRED®, created and maintained by Research Department at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, goes far beyond simply providing data: It combines data with a powerful mix of tools that help the user understand, interact with, display, and disseminate the data.</p><p> Quick link to data page: <a href="http://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/tags/series" target="_blank">http://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/tags/series</a></p><p>See all <a href="/data-resources/">data and resources</a> »</p>
  • <h3>USDA Nutrition Assistance Data</h3><p><img width="180" height="124" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/4/width/180/height/124/485_usda_logo.rev.1407789238.jpg" class="lw_image lw_image485 lw_align_right" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/4/width/180/height/124/485_usda_logo.rev.1407789238.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/4/width/180/height/124/485_usda_logo.rev.1407789238.jpg 3x" data-max-w="1233" data-max-h="850"/>Data and research regarding the following <strong>USDA Nutrition Assistance</strong> programs are available through this site:</p><ul><li>Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) </li><li>Food Distribution Programs </li><li>School Meals </li><li>Women, Infants and Children </li></ul><p> Quick link: <a href="http://www.fns.usda.gov/data-and-statistics" target="_blank">http://www.fns.usda.gov/data-and-statistics</a></p><p>See all <a href="/data-resources/">data and resources</a> »</p>
  • <h3>Congressional Budget Office</h3><p><img width="180" height="180" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/4/width/180/height/180/380_cbo-logo.rev.1406822035.jpg" class="lw_image lw_image380 lw_align_right" data-max-w="180" data-max-h="180"/>Since its founding in 1974, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has produced independent analyses of budgetary and economic issues to support the Congressional budget process.</p><p> The agency is strictly nonpartisan and conducts objective, impartial analysis, which is evident in each of the dozens of reports and hundreds of cost estimates that its economists and policy analysts produce each year. CBO does not make policy recommendations, and each report and cost estimate discloses the agency’s assumptions and methodologies. <strong>CBO provides budgetary and economic information in a variety of ways and at various points in the legislative process.</strong> Products include baseline budget projections and economic forecasts, analysis of the President’s budget, cost estimates, analysis of federal mandates, working papers, and more.</p><p> Quick link to Products page: <a href="http://www.cbo.gov/about/our-products" target="_blank">http://www.cbo.gov/about/our-products</a></p><p> Quick link to Topics: <a href="http://www.cbo.gov/topics" target="_blank">http://www.cbo.gov/topics</a></p><p>See all <a href="/data-resources/">data and resources</a> »</p>