The Healthy Nudge
June 2020
Black Lives Matter. The Black community is suffering from the disproportionate effects of COVID-19 and from police violence on top of centuries of pervasive and systemic racism. Those of us at CHIBE seek to determine how to help our society heal and address some of the important challenges that are in front of us. While I am not a member of the groups who have been targeted by racism and police violence , and I cannot truly know what people from the communities that are most directly affected are experiencing, I recognize the pain and the hurt and the need for us to do better.

Efforts to improve health in populations have been a central focus of our Center, and we are proud of the exceptional work that our affiliated faculty do to improve population health. However, while many faculty have contributed to addressing health disparities , we need to do more. Much more. CHIBE will redouble our efforts to prioritize diversity and inclusion in our ranks and to explore efforts to make contributions to research that examine questions like the distributional equity implications of behavioral economic interventions. We will work with our faculty and senior staff to develop seed support for new initiatives through our pilot grant mechanisms and programming through activities like our seminars, retreat, and annual conference.

I welcome any suggestions any of you have for how we might do this more effectively. Please feel free to reach out to me directly or to Joelle Friedman , the CHIBE Managing Director.

With gratitude and appreciation,
Kevin Volpp, MD, PhD
CHIBE Director
Welcome to The Healthy Nudge . Each month, we'll get you up to speed on the latest developments in policy-relevant health behavioral economics research at CHIBE. Want more frequent updates? Follow us on Twitter @PennCHIBE and visit our website .
"Cause of Death: COVID-19, Police Violence or Racism?"
A 2018 Lancet article by CHIBE's Atheendar Venkataramani, PhD, MD, MPhil , on " Police Killings and their Spillover Effects on the Mental Health of Black Americans " was cited by several news outlets, including the LA Times , as Americans participate in demonstrations against police brutality, violence, and systemic racism toward Black individuals. Dr. Venkataramani also recently spoke in an American Medical Association panel on " Prioritizing Equity: Police Brutality and COVID-19 ."
How to Use Behavioral Science to Encourage Vaccination
Katherine Milkman, PhD , Angela Duckworth, PhD, MA, MsC , and Mitesh Patel, MD, MBA, MS wrote a USA Today opinion piece that says developing a COVID-19 vaccine is "only half the battle." The next hurdle will be encouraging individuals to actually get the vaccine. Read the article to see what behavioral change techniques could be used to increase the likelihood of widespread vaccination.
Behavioral Science-Informed Tipsheets
In many low- and middle-income countries, COVID-19 poses a major threat to health and economic outcomes. Many countries have limited health system capacity to cope with increased caseloads and fewer resources to protect against the impacts of lockdowns and a global economic slowdown. In South Africa and other countries with high HIV prevalence, the crisis also poses new challenges to ongoing efforts to combat HIV/AIDS. As part of their work with the nudge unit they have launched in South Africa (Indlela: Behavioural Insights for Better Health) , CHIBE Associate Directors Harsha Thirumurthy, PhD , and Alison Buttenheim, PhD, MBA, and their team have developed several resources that provide guidance to low-and middle-income country governments and communities as they navigate the pandemic. Find three tipsheets here: a guide to HIV care continuity led by the Indlela team, and tips for physical distancing and communication during COVID-19, created in collaboration with Indlela, ideas42 and the South African Labour and Development Research Unit SALDRU. Read more here .
CHIBE's COVID-19 Research Projects and Media
CHIBE has launched a website showcasing all of the ways in which CHIBE faculty are involved in the response to COVID-19. Read about their research projects and activities, find media coverage, and resources. If you have a project to share with us, email us here .
Selected Media Coverage
Selected New Publications
The Center for Health Incentives and Behavioral Economics (CHIBE) at the University of Pennsylvania conducts behavioral economics research aimed at reducing the disease burden from major U.S. public health problems. Originally founded within the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics , our mission is to inform health policy, improve health care delivery, and increase healthy behavior.