Iris Bohnet is Professor of Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School. She is the director of the Women and Public Policy Program, associate director of the Harvard Decision Science Laboratory, vice-chair of the Program on Negotiation, and faculty co-chair of the executive program "Global Leadership and Public Policy for the 21st Century" for the World Economic Forum’s Young Global Leaders. She is also affiliated with the Center for Business and Government, the Center for Public Leadership, the Dubai Initiative, and the Institute for Quantitative Social Science, Harvard University. She is a member of the Global Agenda Councils on Diversity and Development and the Gender Gap of the World Economic Forum and serves on the board of the Graduate Institute of International Studies, Geneva, the advisory board of the Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration, and a large number of academic journals focusing on economics, management, negotiation, decision analysis and law.
Professor Bohnet teaches decision-making and negotiation in degree and executive programs. In addition to teaching at Harvard, she has been engaged in the teaching, training and consulting of private and public sector leaders in the United States, Europe, India, and the Middle East.
A behavioral economist combining insights from economics and psychology, Iris Bohnet’s research focuses on decision-making, and on improving decision-making in organizations and society. In particular, she analyzes the causes and consequences of trust and its relevance for negotiation and decision-making. She has developed experimental tools to measure people’s behavior, dispositions and beliefs as accurately as possible in different parts of the world and has pioneered the experimental research in the Middle East. She has published widely in leading academic journals. Her work has been discussed in numerous newspaper articles and on television.
Iris Bohnet received her Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Zurich, Switzerland, in 1997, and has then spent a year as a visiting scholar at the Haas School of Business, University of California at Berkeley. She joined the Harvard Kennedy School as an assistant professor in 1998 and was made full professor in 2006. She is married to Michael Zurcher, and she and her husband have two children. The family lives in Newton, Massachusetts.