17 September 09:00 AM - 05:30 PMArt Gallery of Ontario (AGO) / Toronto, CA

Why are we trying to solve new challenges using old methods? 

How do consumers make decisions about money? Even when we think we’re being financially savvy, we’re still prone to the hidden biases and heuristics that trap us into irrational decisions. But our irrational decisions aren’t random: they’re systematic and predictable, and can be eliminated.

Join us at the inaugural Summit for Science in Financial Services, where the world's most influential behavioural scientists will examine barriers to innovation in the financial services and insurance sectors, and explain the cognitive biases and heuristics involved in financial decision-making. These sessions will equip attendees with actionable insights that apply hidden and sometimes counter-intuitive insights from academic research to real-world business challenges.

“If business leaders truly want to accelerate change, take risks and advance innovation, they must embed the rigor and discipline of scientific thinking into their organizations.” — Kelly Peters, CEO & Co-Founder, BEworks

Why You Should Attend

Learn How Consumers Make Financial Decisions, Predictably Irrationally

Learn how you can apply Behavioural Economics principles to solve the challenges in financial services and drive meaningful outcomes, from product design, pricing, innovation and risk, sales and service strategies, and change management

Accelerate Innovation Within Your Organization With Behavioural Economics

Behavioural Economics is the science of understanding cognitive biases and the art of designing a choice architecture. Awareness of these behavioural factors presents an opportunity for us to inform the way we design and position our products and services

Connect With World-Leading Experts

This prestigious group of scientists, including Dan Ariely, George Loewenstein,
Kelly Peters, Hal Hershfield and Nina Mažar are leading the charge in shaping the application of Behavioural Economics in the world of finance


Dan Ariely, Ph.D.
BEworks, Duke University

Dan is the Chief Behavioural Scientist and co-founder of BEworks; James B. Duke Professor of Psychology and Behavioural Economics at Duke University; and Chief Behavioural Officer at Lemonade. Named as one of the Top 50 Most Influential Thinkers by Bloomberg, Dr. Ariely’s groundbreaking experimental research, TED Talks and prolific writing (as a 3-time New York Times best-selling author for his books Predictably Irrational, The Upside of Irrationality, The Honest Truth About Dishonestyand most recently Dollars and Sense) has made him one of the most prominent leaders in the field of behavioural economics. His most recent book, Dollars and Sense, explores a wide range of everyday topics, from credit card debt and household budgeting to holiday sales, to demonstrate how our ideas about dollars and cents are often wrong and cost us more than we know.

Dan will be presenting his work showcasing the power of behavioural economics on financial decision-making. Read More

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George Loewenstein, Ph.D.
Carnegie Mellon University

George's research focuses on applications of psychology to economics, and specific interests include decision making over time, bargaining and negotiations, psychology and health, law and economics, the psychology of adaptation, the role of emotion in decision making, the psychology of curiosity, conflict of interest, various aspects of sex, unethical behavior, and issues involving research ethics. George has published over 200 journal articles in journals in economics, psychology, law, and other fields. George will be presenting his cutting-edge research on financial decision-making.

George will be presenting his cutting-edge research on financial decision-making. Read More.

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Kelly Peters, MBA
BEworks, University of Toronto

Kelly is the CEO and Co-Founder of BEworks, the first consulting firm dedicated to the practice of applying behavioral economics, where she has designed a robust methodology that integrates the rigour of the scientific method with the innovation of behavioral insights and the pragmatism of management consulting. Her research explores the nexus between behavioral science and technology: improving science through better data-gathering techniques and measures, and improving technology through a scientific understanding of adoption and usage barriers. She is an influential thought leader in the field of Behavioural Science, and advises the C-Suite of Fortune 500s and government leaders. Kelly is a Faculty Lecturer of Applied Behavioral Science at the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management, and regularly lectures at universities including Cornell and Harvard.

Kelly will be presenting on the application of behavioural science for large-scale behavioral change in financial services, covering innovation projects she has led in the domain and presenting real-world results.  Read More

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Nina Mažar, Ph.D.
BEworks, Boston University

Nina is the co-founder of BEworks, co-originator of University of Toronto’s BEAR, former Senior Behavioral Scientist of the World Bank’s behavioral insights team eMBeD, as well as Professor of Marketing at Questrom School of Business at Boston University. Nina, who is currently the president elect of the Society for Judgment and Decision Making — the premier academic society for behavioral science — was named one of "The 40 Most Outstanding B-School Profs Under 40 In The World”. Nina's focus on behavioural economics includes the investigation of how expectations, emotions, peers, and random cues in the environment affect how we think about products, money, investments, and morality, and their implications for welfare, development, and policy.  

Nina will be presenting a BEworks' case study published in the Journal of Consumer Psychology focused on leveraging behavioural economics to reduce credit card delinquency. Read More

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Hal Hershfield, Ph.D.

Hal is an Associate Professor at Anderson School of Management at UCLA. Hal studies how thinking about time transforms the emotions and alters the judgments and decisions people make. While he was at Stanford University, his research concentrated on the psychology of long-term decision-making and how time affects people’s lives — specifically at a moment when Americans are living longer and saving less. Hal will be presenting research from one of his most well-known discoveries: that when people are confronted with their “future selves” they experience an emotional sense of connection that can influence long-term financial and ethical decision-making. Read More

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Michelle Hilscher, Ph.D.

Michelle holds a Ph.D in psychology from the University of Toronto where she also earned an MA and BSc. In the past 11 years, Michelle has studied numerous topics, including: decision-making, belief bias, emotion, communications, consumer and user experience, and organizational behaviour. Prior to joining BEworks, Michelle worked as a Research Associate at Cortex, a governance consulting firm that provides advisory services to institutional investors. In this capacity, Michelle completed projects related to board governance, group decision-making, and strategic planning. At BEworks, Michelle supports clients in a number of sectors, and is particularly interested in issues that fall under the umbrella of behavioural finance. 

Michelle will be presenting selected BEworks' case studies in the domain of financial decision-making.

Read more

David Lewis
Ph.D. / BEworks

Most recently, David Lewis was an Assistant Professor at the Ted Rogers School of Retail Management at Ryerson University. He earned his Ph.D. in Marketing from the Lazaridis School of Business and Economics at Wilfrid Laurier University. He completed his MBA at the Schulich School of Business at York University, and is also a Chartered Financial Analyst. Prior to pursuing his Ph.D., Lewis held numerous senior positions including Head of Technology, Head of Marketing, President, CEO, and Chairman of the Board, at global financial institutions including Barclays Wealth USA, UBS Bank USA, UBS Financial Services Americas, ING DIRECT USA, and Bank of Nova Scotia. Ad Age magazine has also recognized Lewis as being one of the Top 50 marketers in the United States.

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Chuck Howard, Ph.D. Candidate
University of British Columbia

Chuck is a PhD Candidate at the Sauder School of Business, University of British Columbia. Prior to starting his PhD, Chuck was a Research Associate at BEworks. Chuck's research is focused on understanding the causes and consequences of consumer financial misprediction, and sources of bias in moral judgment and decision making.

Chuck will be presenting his experiment-driven work on expense prediction bias, which is the phenomenon that consumers tend to under-predict their future expenses. Chuck's work in this area – including a field study with clients of a North American bank – demonstrates that this bias is prevalent, persistent, and economically significant, but it can be neutralized by a simple cognitive tool that changes the way people perceive the future. Read More

Read more

BEworks is proud to present the inaugural Summit for Science in Financial Services. Founded in 2010, BEworks is the world’s first consulting firm and research institute that specializes in the application of behavioural insights and the scientific method. Dan Ariely, renowned behavioural scientist and New York Times best selling author of Predictably Irrational and The Honest Truth about Dishonesty co-founded BEworks along with the firms’ CEO and BE pioneer Kelly Peters and top marketing scholar Nina Mažar.      @BEworksInc

Working Agenda

Breakfast with the Scientists, sponsored by ARAG


Welcome and Opening Remarks


George Loewenstein, Ph.D. Keynote, presented by Ernst & Young

George will be presenting his cutting-edge research on financial decision-making


Lightning Talk: Chuck Howard, Ph.D. candidate

Chuck will be presenting his experiment-driven work on the causes and consequences of consumer financial misprediction, and the tools he has helped design to improve consumers' savings prediction accuracy


Lightning Talk: Michelle Hilscher, Ph.D.

Michelle will be presenting a selection of case studies from BEworks in the domain of financial decision-making


Lightning Talk: David Lewis, Ph.D., M.B.A

David will be speaking about the failure to seek advice. 


Break, Sponsored by Aird Berlis




Lunch & Learn with Hal Hershfield, Ph.D.

Introductory remarks by Jennifer Reynolds, CEO Toronto Financial Services Alliance. Hal will present research from one of his most well-known discoveries: when people are confronted with their "future selves" they experience an emotional sense of connection that can influence long-term financial and ethical decision-making.


Break, sponsored by Aird Berlis


Panel: Scientific Thinking in your Organization, moderated by Jan De Silva, President and CEO, of Toronto Region Board of trade

Panel moderated by the President and CEO of the Toronto Region Board of Trade, Jan De Silva ( BEworks Co-Founders Kelly Peters, Dan Ariely, and Nina Mažar will discuss the real-world application of behavioural science in Financial Services and how to embed scientific thinking into your organization.


Nina Mažar, Ph.D.

Nina will be presenting a BEworks case study published in the Journal of Consumer Psychology on leveraging behavioural economics to reduce credit card delinquency


Kelly Peters Keynote, presented by ARAG

Kelly will be presenting on the application of behavioural science for large-scale behavioural change in financial services, covering innovation projects she has led in the domain, and presenting real-world results


Dan Ariely, Ph.D Keynote, presented by kyu.

Dan will be presenting his work showcasing the power of behavioural economics on financial decision-making


Closing Remarks


Cocktail Reception

Cocktail reception and poster presentations in Galleria Italia - support for networking with peers interested in or a part of the behavioural economics and financial decision-making communities



 Media are invited to contact Moe Arora ( for accreditation.

Sponsor Information

Sponsorship opportunities are still available.
For information, please reach out to us at

Student Attendance

As a firm committed to academic development and learning, BEworks has complimentary seats for students pursuing careers in cognitive and social psychology, neuroscience and marketing.  We welcome student poster submissions in judgement and decision making that relate to consumer finance. Please submit a maximum 300-word abstract including a short introduction, methods, results, and discussion before August 24, 2018. Final applicants will be contacted to join us by end of August. To apply or for any related questions, please contact the organizing team at


For submissions please visit

Where Art & Science Meet

At BEworks, we are inspired by a man who combined science with art & design: Leonardo Da Vinci. The Art Gallery of Ontario makes this combination possible, and we hope it will inspire all of you.


BEworks is fortunate to be able to host the inaugural Summit for Science in Financial Services at the Art Gallery of Ontario, one of the pinnacle cultural landmarks in Canada. Located in the heart of downtown, close to Yonge & Dundas square and the Toronto Eaton Centre, it’s highly accessible while offering plenty of opportunities to see the city while you’re here. Have a look at directions and hotel recommendations for your stay.



From the Queen Elizabeth Way (QEW)

  • Merge onto Gardiner Expy E.
  • Use any lane to turn left onto Lower Spadina Ave/Spadina Ave.
  • Continue to follow Spadina Ave.
  • Turn right onto Dundas St W.
  • The AGO is at the corner of Dundas Street and Beverley Street on your right side.

From the 401

  • Take the Avenue Road S exit.
  • Continue on Avenue Rd. Drive to Dundas St W.
  • Turn right onto Dundas Street West and you will soon see the AGO at the corner of Dundas and McCaul on your left side.

From Pearson International Airport

  • Follow ON-427 S and Gardiner Expy E to Lower Spadina Ave/Spadina Ave in Old Toronto.
  • Take the Spadina Ave. exit from Gardiner Expy E.
  • Continue on Spadina Ave. to Dundas St W
  • Turn right onto Dundas St W.
  • The AGO is at the corner of Dundas Street and Beverley Street on your right side.

From Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport

  • Head northwest on Eireann Quay
  • Continue onto Bathurst Street
  • Continue straight to stay on Bathurst St W
  • Turn right onto Dundas St W
  • The AGO will be on the right side



  • The St. Patrick stop on the Yonge-University-Spadina line is the closest stop to the AGO entrance. It is 3 blocks from University or a 5 minute walk.
  • The closest accessible stop is Queen's Park (College Street) or Osgoode (Queen Street).
  • Exit the subway station and walk west on Dundas St W towards Simcoe Street.
  • You will pass the Village by the Grange building on the left.
  • At McCaul Street, you will see the AGO on the left hand side.
  • Visit the TTC website for transit maps and schedules.

Dundas Streetcar

If you're taking the 505 Dundas streetcar from the east, get off at McCaul Street. If you're arriving from the west, get off at Beverley Street. The streetcar stops are located conveniently right in front of the AGO.

Spadina Streetcar

If you are arriving on the 510 Spadina streetcar from the north or south, get off at Dundas Street and walk east along Dundas. You will see the AGO on the right hand side when you reach Beverley Street. It is 3 blocks from Spadina or about a 5 minute walk.

Visit the TTC website for transit maps and schedules.


Visit to find parking options nearby.Visit Motor Coach and Bus Parking Information for Toronto for further information on parking for charter buses.


Hilton Toronto

145 Richmond Street West, Toronto, Ontario
M5H 2L2, Canada
TEL: +1-416-869-3456
FAX: +1-416-869-3187

Sheraton Centre Toronto Hotel

123 Queen Street West , Toronto, Ontario
M5H 2M9, Canada
TEL: 855-516-1090

Doubletree By Hilton Hotel Toronto Downtown

108 Chestnut Street, Toronto, Ontario
M5G1R3, Canada
TEL: +1-416-977-5000
FAX: +1-416-977-9513

Marriott Downtown at CF Toronto Eaton Centre

525 Bay Street Toronto, Ontario 
M5G 2L2,Canada
TEL: +1 416-597-9200

The Beverley Hotel

335 Queen Street West , Toronto, Ontario
M5V 2A4, Canada
TEL: +855-516-1090

Bisha Hotel Toronto

80 Blue Jays Way Toronto, Ontario
M5V 2G3, Canada
TEL: 844-478-9364
FAX: 647-556-2288

The Shangri-La

188 University Avenue, Toronto, Ontario
M5H 0A3, Canada
TEL: +1 (647) 788 8888   
FAX: +1 (647) 788 8889

Ticket Information

Single Tickets

General Rate:  $990 CAD

Group Tickets

  $5000 CAD per table of 6


BEworks Contact Info

(416) 920-1921

Head Office in Toronto, Canada