Behavioral Researcher, Investors and Society at Morningstar
The Group: The Behavioral Insights Team aims to help investors achieve their goals more effectively through original research about financial behavior. We study what works and publicize the results broadly.
The Role: Understand the interaction between investors and society, as investors formulate and express their preferences on corporate behavior, sustainability, and the economy.
Morningstar is looking for a behavioral researcher to help build out a new area of research on investor preferences and behavior. In particular, we’re interested in the role that investors currently play – and can play – in their societies. At its heart, investing directs capital towards and away from companies, changing the cost of doing business; investors thus have a broad impact beyond their own finances. For example, some investors direct their capital in intentional ways to mitigate potential climate change risks in their portfolio, while others pursue impact investing to support diversity equity and inclusion in society.
In this role, you’ll conduct statistical analyses and field experiments to understand this dynamic, the specific obstacles that investors face to translating preferences into action, and how to help investors overcome them. Our goal is not to write theoretical papers – rather, we are developing practical, field-tested guidance for investors and the professionals who serve them.
Most of our team is based in Chicago, but we are open to other US locations, with travel to Chicago.
- Lead our research on investors and society – developing empirically grounded models of investor preferences and how those preferences are translated into action.
- Conduct detailed analyses of large individual-level datasets, such as the PSID.
- Measure the preferences of investors, especially around corporate behavior. This includes but is not limited to: the environment, diversity, and political involvement.
- Through both qualitative and quantitative analyses, identify potential obstacles to investors expressing those preferences in their investments and other engagements with companies.
- Design, execute, and analyze large-scale randomized control trials to test your ideas; Morningstar interacts with millions of individuals and their advisors.
- Based on your research, serve as in-house expert on investor interactions with society, understanding and expressing the opportunities we have for empowering investors and outlining their systemic consequences.
- Publicize your results – in papers, in the media, and at conferences.
- A PhD or a Masters with appropriate professional experience. This role is particularly appropriate for someone in economics, behavioral economics, quantitative psychology, or data driven public policy, but others with these skills are welcome as well.
- At least two years of experience using Python, R, STATA, (No)SQL or Matlab to analyze complex individual-level datasets (academics: yes, GRAs count).
- Professional experience measuring individual intent and developing and field-testing behavioral interventions to close the intention-action gap is strongly preferred.
- Demonstrated ability writing about behavioral research for a general audience.
- Experience in and enjoyment of public speaking.
- A strong professional and/or personal interest in investing.
- Authorization to work in the U.S.
• Demonstrated ability writing about behavioral research for a general audience.
• Experience and enjoyment in public speaking.
• A strong professional and/or personal interest in investing.
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