Kai Ruggeri, PhD

  • Professor of Health Policy and Management at the CUMC
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Dr. Kai Ruggeri is a Professor in the Department of Health Policy & Management. He studies fundamental questions of population behavior and decision-making, primarily financial and health. He focuses on how integrating behavioral evidence into policies can reduce inequalities and benefit the well-being of entire populations.

His recent projects involve behavioral policy studies focusing on large-scale data related to economic choices and related outcomes, which have been covered in media around the world. Collaborating partners include local and national governments, non-profit organizations, industry, and other academic institutions, in New York, across the US, and abroad. Kai joined Columbia in 2017 after founding the Policy Research Group at the University of Cambridge, which he joined in 2011. 

At Mailman, he teaches courses in analytics, behavior and decision-making, public policy, and managerial economics. Kai also founded and directs the Global Behavioral Science (GLOBES) program at Columbia. He is a Senior Fellow at the Centre for Business Research in the Judge Business School at the University of Cambridge, as well as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and Sciences. Kai completed his PhD at Queen's University, Belfast, in Northern Ireland. He is an Officer in the US Air Force/New York Air National Guard.

Academic Appointments

  • Professor of Health Policy and Management at the CUMC

Administrative Titles

  • Director, Global Behavioral Science (GLOBES) Program

Credentials & Experience

Education & Training

  • BA, Psychology
  • PhD, Psychology

Committees, Societies, Councils

https://jrp.pscholars.org'>Executive Director, Junior Researcher Programme

Editorial Boards

Behavioural Public Policy

Honors & Awards

US$445,232 - PI - DEVIATE: Using positive deviance to reduce economic and health inequality - National Science Foundation - 2022-2026

US$2,500,000 - Co-PI - Preparing for Future Pandemics: Subway Crowd Management to Minimize Airborne Transmission of Respiratory Viruses (Way-CARE) - National Science Foundation - 2022-2026

US$998,658 - Co-PI - RAISE: IHBEM: Human Behavior Driven Mathematical Modeling and Forecasting of Respiratory Disease Transmission in Urban Settings - National Science Foundation - 2022-2026

US$200,000 - PI - Nudging New York: Using Data Science to Increase Healthcare Access in Underserved Communities - Data Science Institute - 2019-2020

GB£5,978,505 - Co-I/Theme PI - R4HC-MENA: Research for health in conflict: Developing capability, partnerships and research in the Middle East and North Africa - Economic and Social Research Council (UK) - 2017-202


Selected Publications

Ruggeri, K., …, Van Bavel, J., & Willer, R. (2024). A synthesis of evidence for policy from behavioral science during COVID-19. Nature. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41586-023-06840-9

Ruggeri, K. (2022). Psychology and behavioral economics: Applications for public policy. Routledge. 

Ruggeri, K., Panin, A., … & García-Garzon, E. (2022). The globalizability of temporal discounting. Nature Human Behaviour, 6, 1386-1397. doi: 10.1038/s41562-022-01392-w

Ruggeri, K., & Folke, T. (2022). Unstandard Deviation: The Untapped Value of Positive Deviance for Reducing Inequalities. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 17(3), 711–731. doi: 10.1177/17456916211017865

Ruggeri, K., Alí, S., … Folke, T. (2020). Replicating patterns of Prospect Theory for decision under risk. Nature Human Behaviour, 4, 622-633. doi: 10.1038/s41562-020-0886-x

Global Health Activities

Urban Health Activities