For over a decade, the Action Design Network has promoted behavioral science and design through meetups across 15 cities, a conference series, podcast, and books.
We’re growing along with the community. We’re still an all-volunteer network of people who believe in ethical behavioral science. We’re still holding engaging regional events to help people learn about and apply this craft. What’s different is that we’re turning our attention outwards.
We are increasingly promoting ethical, rigorous applied behavioral science and design in new areas, and helping people outside of our community to understand what we do, engage with applied BeSci, and do more with BeSci in their lives. This includes our new book (focusing on the international development community), our WhatsApp community (for the general public) and our new special interest groups. And there's much more to come.
As we expand our efforts, we wanted a name that better aligns with what we do. The term "Action Design" described our focus on closing the intention-action gap in human behavior; it's out of date, and doesn't reflect what our group has truly become: an international non-profit organization focused on promoting applied behavioral science. Hence our new name and identity.
Chris Nave is a behavioral scientist with over 12 years of experience in higher education as a researcher, editor/reviewer, program builder/manager, advisor, research translator, service provider, and research consultant. Chris was an Assistant Professor of Psychology at Rutgers-Camden, was the founding Managing Director of the Master of Behavioral and Decision Sciences (MBDS) program at the University of Pennsylvania, and currently serves as Director of Behavioral Research Services at the Harvard Business School.
Chris’s research has appeared in top academic journals and resulted in several editorial, reviewing, and advising responsibilities. At Penn, Chris created instructional, networking, and research translation opportunities for MBDS students through Design Challenges with top industry partners, through the creation of a multi-faceted Advisory Board, and in his role as Lead City Organizer and founder of the Action Design Philly chapter. Chris has his PhD in Social-Personality Psychology from the University of California, Riverside, his MA in General Experimental Psychology from Wake Forest University, and a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Elon University.
Ammaarah heads the Capacity Building team at UNESCO Mahatma Gandhi Institute for Education Peace and Sustainable Development (MGIEP) while assisting and advising the Director on content and managerial matters. She has over ten years of experience in the public service in South Africa, where she served as the Director for Policy, Research and Analysis, focusing on policy development, design and implementation of strategic and innovative programmes in the social sector.
Ammaarah has worked extensively in designing, implementing and evaluating behaviourally informed programmes and interventions, with the view to scale educational impact. Ammaarah also sits on various international advisory groups including the WHO’s Technical Advisory Group on Behavioural Insights and Sciences for Health.