Katie S. Mehr, Ph.D.
I am an Assistant Professor in the Marketing, Business Economics, and Law department at the Alberta School of Business at the University of Alberta. I earned my Ph.D. from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in May 2023.
My research focuses on understanding consumer behavior. Thus far, I have pursued two broad research streams.
In my primary stream of research, I explore how consumers rate products and experiences, and how they draw inferences from other consumers’ ratings. For example, in one project I explore how consumers’ overall ratings of an experience change depending on whether they asked to rate specific attributes of that experience. And in a different project I explore how rater agreement (i.e., two raters giving 3 stars) and rater disagreement (i.e., one rater giving 1 star and one rater giving 5 stars) affects consumers' product perceptions. I also have several projects in progress, including one that explores how order affects consumers' ratings and another that investigates what factors affect consumers' likelihood to rate a product or experience.
In another stream of research, I study interventions that help consumers increase their motivation and achieve their goals. In one project, we found that consumers benefit from “copy-paste prompts” that encourage consumers to mimic a goal-achievement strategy used by an acquaintance. In another project, we found that consumers are more motivated by “streaky” incentives – those that increase with consecutive behaviors – than by larger but constant incentives. I am also planning a field experiment that explores the benefits (and/or costs) of encouraging people to achieve streaks and exploring how self-given incentives can affect motivation.