Faculty/Staff Current Students
Curriculum VitaeAssistant Professor, Marketing

Mary Steffel

202 Hayden Hall
Northeastern University
360 Huntington Avenue
Boston, Massachusetts 02115-5000

617.373.3859
m.steffel@northeastern.edu


Profile

Education

Ph.D., Marketing, University of Florida

Ph.D., and MA, Psychology, Princeton University

B.A., Psychology, Columbia University

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Research & Teaching Interests

Professor Steffel's research is at the interface of consumer behavior, social psychology, and judgment and decision making. She employs experimental research methods to examine when people call upon others to help them make decisions, what are the barriers to accurately gauging others’ preferences and effectively choosing on their behalf, and how to help people make better decisions for themselves and others. Her work has appeared in journals such as the Journal of Consumer Research, Journal of Marketing Research, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Medical Decision Making, and Health Psychology. She teaches Consumer Behavior at the MBA and undergraduate levels.

Industry & Academic Experience

Professor Steffel is a fellow at the Office of Evaluation Sciences at the General Services Administration and served on the White House Social and Behavioral Sciences Team from 2016-2017. Before joining Northeastern University, Professor Steffel served as an Assistant Professor of Marketing at the University of Cincinnati, where she served as director of the Choice And Thought (CAT) Lab and founder of the Research Assistant Program in Marketing.

Services to the Profession

Professor Steffel is a faculty associate of Northeastern’s Center for Health Policy and Healthcare Research. She is also co-chair of the Consumer Psychology Track to the American Psychological Association for 2018 and the Judgment and Decision Making Pre-Conference at the Society for Personality and Social Psychology Conference for 2016-2018.

Awards & Recognition

Transformative Consumer Research Grant Winner (2015)

Marketing Science Institute Research Competition on "Social Interactions and Social Media Marketing" Winner (2014)

Georgetown Consumer Market Insights Challenge Award Winner (2014)

Society for Consumer Psychology Dissertation Proposal Competition Winner (2011)

Publications

Selected Publications

Steffel, Mary, and Elanor F. Williams (2017), “Delegating Decisions: Recruiting Others to Make Difficult Choices,” Journal of Consumer Research.

Steffel, Mary, Elanor F. Williams, and Ruth Pogacar (2016), “Ethically Deployed Defaults: Transparency and Consumer Protection through Disclosure and Preference Articulation,” Journal of Marketing Research, 53 (5), 865-80.

Steffel, Mary, Elanor F. Williams, and Jaclyn Perrmann-Graham (2016), “Passing the Buck: Delegating Choices to Others to Avoid Responsibility and Blame,” Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 135, 32-44.

Williams, Elanor F., and Mary Steffel (2014), "Legitimate Enablement or Unfair Embellishment?: Double Standards in the Use of Enhancing Products by Self and Others," Journal of Consumer Research, 41 (2), 506-25.

Steffel, Mary, and Robyn LeBoeuf (2014), "Over-Individuation in Gift Giving: Shopping for Multiple Recipients Leads Givers to Choose Unique but Less Preferred Gifts," Journal of Consumer Research, 40 (6), 1167-80.

Steffel, Mary, and Daniel M. Oppenheimer (2009), "Happy By What Standard? The Role Of Interpersonal And Intrapersonal Comparisons In Ratings Of Happiness," Social Indicators Research, 92 (1), 69-80.

Pronin, Emily, John J. Fleming, and Mary Steffel (2008), "Value Revelations: Disclosure Is In The Eye Of The Beholder," Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 95 (4), 795-809.

Johnson, Eric J., Mary Steffel, and Daniel G. Goldstein (July, 2005), "Making Better Decisions: From Measuring To Constructing Preferences," Health Psychology, 24 (4 Suppl), S17-22.

Presentations

Selected Presentations

Steffel, Mary, and Elanor F. Williams (October, 2017), “Delegating Decisions: Recruiting Others to Make Choices We Might Regret,” Paper presented at the Association for Consumer Research Conference, San Diego, CA.

Grewal, Lauren, Mary Steffel, and Dhruv Grewal (October, 2017), “How Shall I Thank Thee? Giver-Recipient Discrepancies in Preferences for Public or Private Expressions of Gratitude” Paper to be presented at the Association for Consumer Research Conference, San Diego, CA.

Pogacar, Ruth, Frank Kardes, and Mary Steffel (June, 2017), “Debiasing Inaction Inertia to Encourage Retirement Savings.” Paper presented at the American Marketing Association Marketing and Public Policy Conference, Washington, DC.

Pogacar, Ruth, Mary Steffel, and Frank Kardes (June, 2017), “Debiasing Default Effects With Accountability.” Working paper presented at the American Marketing Association Marketing and Public Policy Conference, Washington, DC.

Steffel, Mary, Elanor F. Williams, and Ruth Pogacar (January, 2017), “Ethically Deployed Defaults: Transparency and Consumer Protection via Disclosure and Preference Articulation.” Paper presented at the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, San Antonio, TX.

Steffel, Mary, Elanor F. Williams, and Ruth Pogacar (November, 2016), “Ethically Deployed Defaults: Transparency and Consumer Protection via Disclosure and Preference Articulation.” Paper presented at the Preconference on Debiasing Decision Makers at the Society for Judgment and Decision Making, Boston, MA.

Grewal, Lauren, Mary Steffel, and Dhruv Grewal (November, 2016), “How Shall I Thank Thee? Giver-Recipient Discrepancies in Preferences for Public or Private Expressions of Gratitude” Poster presented at the Society for Judgment and Decision Making, Boston, MA.

Grewal, Lauren, Mary Steffel, and Dhruv Grewal (September, 2016), “How Shall I Thank Thee? Giver-Recipient Discrepancies in Preferences for Public or Private Expressions of Gratitude” Poster presented at the Association for Consumer Research Conference, Berlin, Germany.

Steffel, Mary, Elanor F. Williams, and Robyn LeBoeuf (February, 2016), “Overly Specific Gift Giving: Givers Choose Personalized but Less-Versatile and Less-Preferred Gifts.” Paper presented at the Society for Consumer Psychology Conference, St. Pete Beach, FL.

Steffel, Mary, Elanor F. Williams, Ruth Pogacar, and Ana Figueras (November, 2015), “Ethically Deployed Defaults: Transparency and Consumer Protection via Disclosure and Preference Articulation.” Paper presented at the Society for Judgment and Decision Making Conference, Chicago, IL.

Wu, Ruomeng, Mary Steffel, and Sharon Shavitt (November, 2015), “Individuating Gifts out of Liking and Respect: Expanding Gift Giving Theory with a Cross-Culture Perspective,” Poster presented at the Society for Judgment and Decision Making Conference, Chicago, IL.

Williams, Elanor F., Mary Steffel, and Daniel Grossman (October, 2015), “Does Sharing Signal Caring? Asymmetric Interpretations of the Informativeness of Own and Others’ Social Media Communications.” Paper presented at the Association for Consumer Research Conference, New Orleans, LA.

Steffel, Mary, Elanor F. Williams, and Robyn LeBoeuf (October, 2015), “Overly Specific Gift Giving: Givers Choose Personalized but Less-Versatile and Less-Preferred Gifts.” Paper presented at the Association for Consumer Research Conference, New Orleans, LA.

Pogacar, Ruth, Mary Steffel, Elanor F. Williams, and Ana Figueras (August, 2015), “Do Defaults Work When They’re Disclosed? Effectiveness and Perceived Ethicality of Disclosed Defaults.” Paper presented at the Subjective Probability, Utility and Decision Making Conference, Budapest, Hungary.

Selected Media Appearances


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