The uncertainty lab research group investigates two general topics: how people make judgments and decisions under uncertainty, and applications of behavioral insights in the field. We rely on a combination of empirical methods including surveys, laboratory and field experiments, analysis of market and archival data, physiological measurement and brain imaging techniques.
On a broad level, decisions under uncertainty are influenced by our experiences, beliefs, and preferences. Our research decomposes these components, evaluating the separate and combined influence of these factors on decisions. We also explore metacognitive antecedents of decisions under uncertainty—how our awareness or lack of awareness of what we know and what we don’t know influences judgment and choice.
In our newest stream of research we also examine how people intuitively distinguish inherently knowable (epistemic) uncertainty from inherently random (aleatory) uncertainty, and how perceptions of these independent dimensions shapes various facets of decision behavior.
We are focused on building theory and also testing applications of behavioral science insights. Much of our work focuses on understanding how we can effectively manipulate “choice architecture” to nudge better decisions. In addition to exploring new tools of choice architecture and how they are evaluated, we collaborate on field interventions, especially in the domains of health and financial decision making.
uncertainty lab | news
Postdoctoral Scholar Stephanie Smith Joins the Uncertainty Lab!
"I study the consistencies/inconsistencies
of the choice process across a variety
of decision domains (including uncertainty). I use a combination of eye tracking and computational modeling methods to understand the role of visual attention in shaping preferences, judgments, and decisions."
- Stephanie Smith, PhD