Cait is Associate Professor and Fryrear Chair of Marketing at the University of Pittsburgh’s Katz Graduate School of Business. Since completing her MBA and Ph.D. at the University of South Carolina, her research has spanned a wide range, beginning with work on decision-making in assortments of different size and structures to more recent research on tax payment and social influences in consumer behavior. This work has been published in the Journal of Consumer Research, Journal of Marketing Research, Journal of Marketing, Journal of Consumer Psychology,Journal of Public Policy & Marketing, Journal of the Association for Consumer Research and Management Science. In recognition of her research, Cait was named a Marketing Science Institute Young Scholar, received ACR’s Early Career Award, and was awarded the Shelby D. Hunt/Harold H. Maynard and Lazaridis Prizes (with Andrew Stephen) for contributions to our theoretical understanding of digital and social media marketing.
Cait has also prioritized contributions to the development of the field, whether overtly or behind-the-scenes. Aside from efforts as an Associate Editor at the Journal of Consumer Research, Journal of Consumer Psychology, and the International Journal of Research in Marketing, Cait has co-chaired the ACR and SCP Doctoral Symposia, participated in the Sheth Doctoral Consortium in multiple years, and enjoyed working with doctoral students at her own school and others’. The American Marketing Association recognized these efforts with the Erin Anderson Award in 2016.
The opportunity to serve as the academic-government perspectives director on ACR’s Board is particularly exciting to Cait, as her efforts to bridge academia and practice have often allowed her to work with – and learn from – innovative policymakers and researchers. Cait was an affiliated researcher with the White House’s Social and Behavioral Science team in its first year, and has continued to provide consulting services to the US Department of Labor and Department of Education since that time.
In addition, Cait has been on research teams conducting broad-scale work to promote first-generation college students’ financial aid applications and helped craft messages for former First Lady Michele Obama’s “Up Next” campaign, which used text-based interventions to support college student applications and first-semester success. This worked led to her formal affiliation with the Nudge4 Solutions Group (http://nudge4.org),a think tank based at the University of Virginia that targets the application of behavioral science in policy areas such as education, employment and criminal justice. Closer to home, Cait was appointed a member of Pennsylvania’s Communications Workgroup, and in Fall 2017, Cait is working with the Pennsylvania Governor’s Office for Transformation, Innovation, Management & Efficiency to both provide behavioral science training and identify consumer research applications in the Commonwealth.
These experiences have been incredibly informative, as both successful and unsuccessful attempts to create academic-policy partnerships have helped Cait learn the approaches that best promote fruitful, research-productive collaboration. If elected, Cait hopes to help facilitate greater connections between ACR’s members and government, so that we can apply our shared rigor and enthusiasm to the creation of a happier and healthier society.