Every now and then you have a guest that like Prince, or Cher, that simply needs one name to know who they are. Today, I am happy to welcome Shlomo, more formally known as Dr. Shlomo Benartzi, Professor Emeritus, UCLA Anderson, Founder and CEO, PensionPlus. We dive into the compelling and complex topic of the good, the bad and the ugly of auto everything in retirement plans. As implied, auto features are powerful, but may or may not be the best solutions to everything. Love to hear what you agree or disagree with, please share and leave your comments on LinkedIn. I learned a lot, hope you do as well!
Shlomo Benartzi is a behavioral economist interested in combining the insights of psychology and economics to solve big societal problems. He works on creating digital nudges that leverage technology to achieve massive scale and help millions make better financial decisions. He received a Ph.D. from Cornell University’s Johnson Graduate School of Management and is currently a professor emeritus and co-founder of the Behavioral Decision-Making Group at UCLA Anderson School of Management. He is also a Distinguished Senior Fellow at the Wharton Behavior Change for Good Initiative.
Benartzi’s work has demonstrated the potential for far-reaching improvement. Along with Nobel Laureate Richard Thaler of the University of Chicago, he pioneered the Save More Tomorrow™ (SMarT) program, a behavioral prescription designed to nudge employees to increase their savings rates gradually over time. In their original research, Benartzi and Thaler found that SMarT increased employee savings rates from 3.5 percent to 13.6 percent. The SMarT program is now offered by more than half of the large retirement plans in the U.S. and a growing number of plans in Australia and the U.K. The program has also been incorporated into the Pension Protection Act of 2006, enabling approximately 15 million Americans to boost their retirement savings.
To help bridge the gap between academic research and the real world, Benartzi has worked with many financial institutions and served on multiple advisory boards. He is currently a senior academic advisor for the Voya Behavioral Finance Institute for Innovation, Acorns, Blast, Lili, Personal Capital and Wisdom Tree.
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