Inequity is many things; it is also a behavioral problem. I’ll never forget the day I spent hours looking for tested interventions to reduce the gap in women volunteering more than men at work, and all I could find was how to empower women to feel comfortable volunteering less. Well meaning interventions fail as they misplace the responsibility of behavior change on the individual or fail to account for women’s lived experiences. How many times have you heard women receiving training to negotiate better or be more assertive in work meetings? Why do we place the burden of behavior change on women? I spend many days at Busara trying to shift this paradigm. I want to reimagine organizations as choice architects to disrupt the systemic and structural barriers that perpetuate gender inequity in the workplace and use our decision labs to test feasible solutions.
As the Director for Research and Innovation at Busara, I lead our portfolio of academic collaborations and experiments that focus on creating new knowledge around behavioral mechanisms and behavioral interventions in the Global South. I am currently a Practitioner-in-Residence at MIT GOV/LAB collating stories and learnings on running behavioral lab experiments for policy-making from around the world. Occasionally, I teach Behavioral Experiments for International Development at the University of Chicago. Weaving together years of research process learnings from working with teams across many developing countries, I set up our CREME team that focuses on i) research on research, ii) measurement and cross-cultural contextualization of behavioral science, iii) ethical experimental research and led the set up of a co-branded Consumer Citizen Lab with Nudge Lebanon. Some of my writing focuses on addressing these learnings.
Languages: English, Hindi