Jiaying Zhao, PhD

    Associate Professor, Canada Research Chair

Welcome to the Behavioral Sustainability Lab!

Among the significant problems facing the world today, many involve an imbalance where capacity falls short of demand. Such imbalance violates sustainability and can be manifested as the depletion of natural resources, the struggle to meet financial deadlines, or the cognitive bottleneck under information overload.

To solve these problems, here we ask: What is cognitive science good for? How can cognitive science contribute to sustainability? The goal of our research is to use cognitive principles to design behavioral solutions to address sustainability challenges. In reaching this goal, we also aim to understand how to use behavioral insights to inform the design and the implementation of public policy. Our work draws upon principles and methods from cognitive science, judgment and decision making, behavioral economics, and social psychology, using experimental approaches in lab and field studies (e.g., randomized control trials), as well as large-scale data modeling. We are currently investigating the following four lines of research: