Rethinking the Value of Individual Choice

October 14, 2020 (Wednesday) / 5:00 pm


Rethinking the Value of Individual Choice

Sheena Iyengar

S.T. Lee Professor of Business, Columbia Business School

Allison Hoffman

Professor of Law, University of Pennsylvania

One of the world's leading experts on the psychology of choice, Sheena Iyengar asks the difficult questions about how and why we choose: is the desire for choice innate or bound by culture? Why do we sometimes choose against our best interests? How much control do we really have over what we choose? Sheena Iyengar reveals answers that are surprising and profound.

Introduction and remarks by Allison Hoffman, who has written extensively on choice in relation to healthcare and law. 

Cosponsored by the Marketing Department and the Operations, Information and Decisions Department at The Wharton School.

Sheena Iyengar explores the challenges humans face in a world where they are inundated with options. Her first book, The Art of Choosing, was named to the Financial Times and Goldman Sachs Business Book of the Year Award in 2010, and was ranked #3 on the Best Business and Investing Books of 2010. Her forthcoming book, Think Bigger, examines how we understand identity and define what it means to be authentic in a technologically-advanced world. Her research is regularly cited by The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, The Atlantic, BBC, and NPR. In 2002, she received the Presidential Early Career Award. She has also been ranked in Thinkers50, and been rated one of the World’s Best B-School Professors by Poets & Quants. In addition to her research and teaching at Columbia Business School, Iyengar frequently speaks to Fortune 500 companies, nonprofits, government bodies, and medical institutions around the world. Collectively, her TED talks have received more than five million views.

She graduated from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania with a B.S. in Economics and a B.A. in Psychology and received her Ph.D. in Social Psychology from Stanford University.

Allison K. Hoffman is a Professor of Law at University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School and a Senior Fellow at Penn’s Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics. Professor Hoffman’s work examines health insurance regulation, the Affordable Care Act, Medicare and retiree healthcare expenses, and long-term care. Her most recent writing has examined the role of and value of choice in health care law and policy. Hoffman was formerly on the faculty at the UCLA School of Law and a fellow at the Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics at Harvard. She practiced health law at Ropes & Gray LLP and was a consultant at The Boston Consulting Group and The Bridgespan Group.