Chance's research covers consumer behavior, specializing in decision making and social welfare.
After running a $200 million segment of the Barbie brand at Mattel, she joined the marketing
department at Harvard Business School, where she received the Wyss Award for Research
Excellence. When she completed her doctorate last year, she joined SOM as postdoctoral associate,
working with Ravi Dhar and the Yale Center for Customer Insights (YCCI). She seeks to understand
how people's moral (and immoral) behavior affects their self-perception and choices, and how
behavioral economics can help people resist temptation.
Her dissertation, "Live Long and Prosper," investigates how consumers' behavior influences their preferences and shapes their identities in counterintuitive ways. Contrary to rational expectations, cheating increases intellectual confidence (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 2011), charitable giving makes donors feel wealthier (Journal of Consumer Research, revise and resubmit), and spending time on others leads people to feel they have more time (Psychological Science, 2012). These articles also explore the consequences on behavior and consumer preferences, and present a novel paradigm for studying self-deception. The hypotheses are tested through a variety of methods: laboratory experiments, behavioral outcomes, surveys, field experiments, and analyses of national data sets. Three follow-ups to this work are underway: one manuscript under review which tests methods for debiasing self-deception; another manuscript in preparation which introduces the phenomenon of “choice amnesia,” the motivated forgetting of difficult choices; and another project exploring how helping others makes people feel particularly effective.
Chance also uses behavioral economics to help people avoid temptation and make decisions that will benefit them in the long run. She is currently designing behavior change experiments for improving health in collaboration with Google and OptumHealth.
Chance teaches MGT 538: Mastering Influence and Persuasion, and serves as faculty advisor for MGT 560: YCCI Topics in Customer Insights. At Harvard, she developed leadership curricula and trained facilitators for Executive Education, and led undergraduate thesis workshops for the Mind, Brain, and Behavior Initiative. She holds an MBA from the USC Marshall School of Business, and a BA from Haverford College.