Insights at UBC Sauder

Peter P. Dhillon Centre for Business Ethics names Dr. Kirstin Appelt as Research Director

Dr. Kirstin Appelt as Research Director
Posted 2022-05-11

The Peter P. Dhillon Centre for Business Ethics at UBC Sauder has announced that Dr. Kirstin Appelt has assumed the role of Research Director for the Centre. Dr. Appelt is currently a Research Associate in the Marketing and Behavioural Science Division at UBC Sauder, as well as Research Director of the UBC Decision Insights for Business & Society (UBC-DIBS), and Academic Director of UBC's Advanced Professional Certificate in Behavioural Insights.

Dr. Appelt's research explores why people struggle with important decisions about the future and how to use choice architecture to help make it easier for people to choose the best decisions for themselves, society, and the planet. As Research Director of UBC-DIBS, a cluster of researchers and partners building a leading, cross-sectoral centre of excellence to shape how Behavioural Insights (BI) are used in British Columbia and beyond, Dr. Appelt conducts decision research, uses BI to tackle pressing environmental, financial and social sustainability challenges, trains the next generation of BI Practitioners, and supports the development of the BI community. She also co-chairs the BIG Difference Advisory Board and the BIG Difference BC conference planning committee.

“I think my work to date in the Behavioural Insights field, encouraging people and organisations to make decisions that have positive societal and planetary impacts, dovetails nicely with what the Dhillon Centre stands for—making positive changes and doing business for good,” says Dr. Appelt. “That's why I'm really excited to bring my lens to this interplay between behavioural insights, business for good, and business ethics. There are a lot of synergies there that I’m looking forward to exploring more fully.”

  The Peter P. Dhillon Centre for Business Ethics team (left to right): Carol Liao, Kirstin Appelt, Dale Griffin, Christie Stephenson, Kate White
The Peter P. Dhillon Centre for Business Ethics team (left to right): Carol Liao, Kirstin Appelt, Dale Griffin, Christie Stephenson, Kate White


Reflecting on the Dhillon Centre’s first five years, Dr. Appelt is excited about how far the Dhillon Centre has come and what a dramatic impact it has had on students and the business community in such a short time. Looking towards the future, she is optimistic that it can only rise to loftier heights in the years to come.

“As time goes on, business ethics and issues like equity, diversity and inclusion are only going to grow in importance for the business community as well as the academic community,” said Dr. Appelt. “The Dhillon Centre is in a great position to continue to support businesses as they evolve in a prosocial direction. There's a growing appetite for this kind of work: people and businesses want to move in this direction but are looking for help in how to do so. If we can provide a roadmap for businesses and researchers, the Dhillon Centre can have a powerful and meaningful impact on the world.”

A new initiative that Dr. Appelt is looking forward to launching with the Dhillon Centre this coming year will be the JEDDI Speaker Series, which stands for justice, equity, diversity, decolonization, and inclusion. The series will feature academic and business thought leaders sharing their experiences and strategies for creating more just, equitable, diverse, decolonized, and inclusive workplaces. Speakers are already being confirmed for the Fall of 2022, so watch for more information on this series coming soon.

In the meantime, be sure to check out the events taking place during the semi-annual Behavioural Insights into Business for Social Good (BIBSG) Conference on June 24th and 25th, 2022 at the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver. For more information and registration, see the event listing here.