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Nicole Robitaille

Assistant Professor

Overview

Nicole is an Assistant Professor of Marketing at the Smith School of Business, Queen’s University.

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Academic Area

  • Marketing

Interest Topics

  • Behavioural Economics
  • Consumer Behaviour
  • Decision Making
  • Ethics
  • Government & Policy
  • Marketing
  • Social Impact & Sustainability
  • Wellbeing

Faculty Details

Profile

Full Bio

Nicole is an Assistant Professor of Marketing at the Smith School of Business, Queen’s University.

As a behavioral scientist her research lies at the intersection of consumer behavior and decision making, with a focus on discovering ways to improve consumer welfare, marketing, and public policy. She uses both laboratory and field experiments to investigate questions across a variety of domains including financial, health and moral decision-making. Her work is published in the Journal of Marketing, Management Science, and the Harvard Business Review and has been presented at numerous international conferences.

In addition to her academic work, Nicole currently serves on the National Financial Literacy Research Sub-Committee for the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada. She has also worked as advisor to the Government of Canada’s Behavioural Insights Unit and the Ontario Government’s Behavioural Insights Unit, where she formally worked as Chief Researcher. Her work on increasing organ donation with the Ontario Government was awarded the prestigious Amethyst award for outstanding achievement.

Academic Degrees

PhD Marketing
University of Toronto, Rotman School of Management (2014)   

MSc Marketing
Concordia University, John Molson School of Business (2008)

BSc Psychology (Behavioral Neuroscience)
Concordia University, Canada (2006)

Academic Experience

Smith School of Business, Queen's University
Assistant Professor of Marketing (2014 - Present)

Publications

Journal Articles

Robitaille, N., House, J., & Mazar, N. (Forthcoming). Effectiveness of Planning Prompts on Organizations’ Likelihood to File their Overdue Taxes: A Multi-wave Field Experiment, Management Science

Robitaille, N., Mazar, N., Tsai, C.I., Haviv, A.M., & Hardy, E. (2021). Increasing Organ Donor Registrations with Behavioral Interventions: A Large-Scale Field Experiment, Journal of Marketing, 85(3), 168-183. 

Mazar, N., Robitaille, N., & House, J. (2021). Do Behavioral Nudges work on Organizations? Harvard Business Review (website), February 22, 2021, https://hbr.org/2021/02/do-behavioral-nudges-work-on-organizations?ab=herosubleft-2

Manuscripts Under Review/Working Papers

Philp, M., Ashworth, L., Robitaille, N., & Rath, S. Gifted Preferences: How Gift-Receipt Can Change Recipient Preferences, revise and resubmit, Journal of Consumer Psychology

Mazar, N., Plassmann, H., Robitaille, N., & Lindner, A. Pain of Paying – A Metaphor Gone Literal: Evidence from Neurobiology and Behavioral Decision Making, revise and resubmit, Journal of Consumer Research

Robitaille, N., Mazar, N., & Mitchell, A. Removing Individuals’ License to Misbehave, manuscript in preparation.

Rath, S., Ashworth, L,. Robitaille, N., & Philp, M. Friend or Firm: When Friendliness Reduces Comfort Perceptions During Sales Interactions, manuscript in preparation.

Rath, S., Ashworth, L,. & Robitaille, N. Pangs from Persuasion: When Recommendations Undermine Consumers' Social Worth, manuscript in preparation.

Sobol, K., Robitaille, N., & Walsh, D. The Subjective Experience of Goal Failure: How Choosing the Lesser Evil Eradicates the Negative Consequences of Goal Failure, manuscript in preparation.

Selected Media Coverage

CBC Radio, The Conversation, CTV, EurekAlert, The Globe and Mail, Global News, The National Post, Smith Business Insight

Teaching

Instructor

  • Introduction to Marketing, Queen’s University, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2019, 2021
  • Psychology Special Directed Lab Course, Queen’s University, 2017 

PhD Committees

  • Committee Member, Suzanne Rath, Queen’s University (2019)

MSc Student Supervision

  • Donella Plastik, Queen’s University, 2019
  • Alyssa Whalen, Queen’s University, 2018

Research

Interests

Behavioral science, judgement and decision making, consumer wellbeing, public policy 

My research is in the area of behavioral science and its applications to consumer wellbeing, marketing and policy. I take a behavioral economics approach to study consumer decision making, using field and laboratory data.  My research has covered a broad range of topics such at looking at how nudges can encourage organizations improve tax compliance, increase organ donor registrations, and help consumers stay committed to their long term goals.

Presentations

Conference Presentations (*presenter)

Sobol, K.,* Robitaille, N., & Walsh, D. (2021). Fending Off Failure: How Choosing the Lesser Evil Eradicates the Negative Consequences of Goal Failure, paper presented at 15th Annual International Conference on Psychology, Athens, Greece.

Sobol, K.,* Robitaille, N., & Walsh, D. (2021). Fending Off Failure: How Choosing the Lesser Evil Eradicates the Negative Consequences of Goal Failure, paper presented at Southern Ontario Behavioral Decision Research Conference, virtual.

Sobol, K.,* Robitaille, N., & Walsh, D. (2019). The Subjective Experience of Goal Failure: How Choosing the Lesser Evil Eradicates the Negative Consequences of Goal Failure, poster presented at Society for Judgment and Decision Making Conference, Montreal, QC.

Rath, S.,* Ashworth, L,. & Robitaille, N. (2019). Perceived Persuasion Conveys a Threat to Consumers’ Social Worth, paper presented at Association for Consumer Research Conference, Atlanta, GA.

Robitaille, N.,* Mazar, N., Tsai, C.I. & Hardy, E. (2019). Nudging to Increase Organ and Tissue Donor Registrations, paper presented at Behavioural Insights into Business for Social Good, Vancouver, BC.

Ashworth, L.,* & Robitaille, N. (2019). Purchase Reluctance: The Effect of Irrelevant Price Offers, paper presented at Southern Ontario Behavioral Decision Research Conference, Waterloo, ON.

Rath, S.,* Ashworth, L,. & Robitaille, N. (2018). Pangs from Persuasion: When Recommendations Undermine Consumers’ Social Worth, paper presented at Association for Consumer Research, Dallas, TX.  

Robitaille, N.,* House, J., & Mazar, N. (2018). Effectiveness of Repeated Implementation Intension- Interventions on Organizations’ likelihood to File their Overdue Taxes, paper presented at International Congress of Applied Psychology, Montreal, QC.  

Philp, M.,* Ashworth, L., Robitaille, N., & Rath, S. (2018). You Are What You Get: The Effects of Receiving Gifts on Reflected Appraisals, Identity, and Future Consumption, paper presented at Society for Consumer Psychology, Dallas, TX.  

Rath, S.,* Ashworth, L,. & Robitaille, N., & Philp, M. (2017), Friend or Firm: When Friendliness Reduces Comfort Perceptions During Sales Interactions, paper presented at Association for Consumer Research, San Diego, CA.

House, J.,* Robitaille, N., & Mazar, N. (2017). Implementation Intentions: How to Nudge Organizations to Pay their Overdue Taxes, paper presented at Southern Ontario Behavioral Decision Research Conference, Kingston, ON.

Rath, S.,* Ashworth, L,. & Robitaille, N., & Philp, M. (2017). Friend or Firm: When Friendliness Reduces Comfort Perceptions During Sales Interactions, paper presented at Ivey Symposium on Consumer Behavior, London, ON.

Tsai, C.I.,* Zhao, M., & Robitaille, N. (2016). How ‘Time until the End’ Influences Actual versus Predicted Consumer Experiences: A Resource Allocation Account, paper presented at Association for Consumer Research, Berlin, Germany.

Philp, M.,* Ashworth, L., Robitaille, N., & Rath, S. (2016). Gifting and Identity: The Effect of Gifts on Receiver Self-Identity, paper presented at Association for Consumer Research, Berlin, Germany.

Rath, S.,* Ashworth, L,. & Robitaille, N., & Philp, M. (2016).Friend or Firm: When Friendliness Reduces Comfort Perceptions During Sales Interactions, poster presented at Association for Consumer Research, Berlin, Germany.

Robitaille, N.,* Mazar, N., & Tsai, C.I. (2016). Nudging to Increase Organ and Tissue Donor Registrations, paper presented at Behavioral Decision Research in Management, Toronto, ON.

Robitaille, N.,* Mazar, N., & Tsai, C.I. (2016). Nudging to Increase Organ and Tissue Donor Registrations, paper presented at Southern Ontario Behavioral Decision Research Conference, London, ON.

Rath, S.,* Ashworth, L,. & Robitaille, N., Philp, M., & Kerman, J. (2016). I’m not your Friend, Buddy: The Unfavorable Effects of Firm Friendliness on Consumer Attitudes, paper presented at Brand and Brand Relationships Conference, Toronto, ON.

Robitaille, N.,* Mazar, N., & Tsai, C.I. (2016). Nudging to Increase Organ and Tissue Donor Registrations, paper presented at Behavioral Science and Policy Association Conference, Washington, DC.

Robitaille, N.,* Mazar, N., & Tsai, C.I. (2016). Nudging to Increase Organ and Tissue Donor Registrations, paper presented at Society for Consumer Psychology, St. Pete Beach, FL.

Philp, M.,* Ashworth, L., Robitaille, N., & Rath, S. (2016). Gifting and Identity: The Effect of Gifts on Receiver Self-Identity, paper presented at the Ivey Symposium on Consumer Behavior, London, ON.

Robitaille, N.,* Mazar, N., & Tsai, C.I. (2015). Nudging to Increase Organ and Tissue Donor Registrations, paper presented at Society for Judgment and Decision Making, Chicago, IL.

House, J.,* Robitaille, N., & Mazar, N. (2015). Increasing Timely Tax Payment with Implementation Intentions: A Field Experiment, paper presented at Society for Judgment and Decision Making, Chicago, IL.

Robitaille, N.,* Mazar, N., & Tsai, C.I. (2015). Nudging to Increase Organ and Tissue Donor Registrations, paper presented at Association for Consumer Research, New Orleans, LA.

House, J.,* Mazar, N., & Robitaille, N. (2015). Increasing Timely Tax Payment with Implementation Intentions: A Field Experiment, paper presented at Academy of Management, Vancouver, BC.

Mazar, N.,* Plassmann, H., Robitaille, N., & Lindner, A. (2015). The Origin of the Pain of Paying: Evidence from fMRI and behavioral experiments, paper presented at European Conference of the Society of Consumer Psychology, Vienna, Austria.

Robitaille, N., Mazar, N.,* & Tsai, C.I. (2015). Increasing Organ and Tissue Donor Registration, paper presented at The La Londe Conference in Marketing Communications and Consumer Behavior, La Londe, France.

Mazar, N., Plassmann, H.,* Robitaille, N., & Lindner, A. (2015).The Origin of the Pain of Paying: Evidence from fMRI and behavioral experiments, paper prested at The La Londe Conference in Marketing Communications and Consumer Behavior, La Londe, France.

Robitaille, N.,* Mazar, N., & Mitchell, A. (2014). Removing Consumers’ License to Misbehave, paper presented at Association for Consumer Research, Baltimore, MD.  

Mazar, N., Plassmann, H.,* Robitaille, N., & Lindner, A. (2014). The Origin of the Pain of Paying: Evidence from fMRI and Behavioral Experiments, paper presented at Annual Meeting of the Society for NeuroEconomics, Miami, FL.

Mazar, N., Plassmann, H.,* Robitaille, N., & Lindner, A. (2014). The Origin of the Pain of Paying: Evidence from fMRI and Behavioral Experiments, paper presented at Behavioral Decision Research in Management, London, UK.

Mazar, N.,* Plassmann, H., Robitaille, N., & Lindner, A. (2012). The Origin of the Pain of Paying, paper presented at Society for Judgment and Decision Making, Minneapolis, MN.

Mazar, N.,* Plassmann, H., Robitaille, N., & Lindner, A. (2012). The Origin of the Pain of Paying, paper presented at Society for Consumer Psychology, Florence, Italy.

Robitaille, N.,* Mazar, N., & Mitchell, A. (2012). Removing Consumers’ License to Misbehave, paper presented at Society for Consumer Psychology, Las Vegas, NV.  

Robitaille, N.,* Mazar, N., & Mitchell, A. (2012). Removing Consumers’ License to Misbehave, paper presented at Ivey Symposium on Consumer Behavior, London, ON.

Robitaille, N.,* & Mazar, N. (2011). Removing Consumers’ License to Misbehave, paper presented at Society for Judgment and Decision Making, Seattle, WA.  

Mazar, N., Plassmann, H., Robitaille, N.,* & Lindner, A. (2011). The Origin of Pain of Paying, paper presented at Association for Consumer Research, St. Louis, MO.

Robitaille, N.,* Grohmann, B., Zhou, R., & VonGrunau, M. (2009). The Effects of Product Display Organization on Consumers’ Visual Attention to Attributes, poster presented at Society for Consumer Psychology, San Diego, CA.

Penhune, V., Longo dos Santos, C.,* and Robitaille, N. (2006). Consolidation of Implicit and Explicit Learning in a Biconditional Grammar Task, poster presented at Cognitive Neuroscience Society, San Francisco, CA.

Chaired Symposia

Robitaille, N., & Mazar, N. (2016). Symposium Co-Chairs. The Greater Good: Behavioral Research with Social Value, Society for Consumer Psychology Conference, St. Pete Beach, FL.

Robitaille, N., & Mazar, N. (2015). Symposium Co-Chairs. The Greater Good: Behavioral Research with Social Value, Association for Consumer Research Conference, New Orleans, LA.

Robitaille, N. (2011). Symposium Chair. Spending Hurts? Examining the Antecedes and Consequences of the Pain of Paying, Association for Consumer Research Conference, St. Louis, MI.

Awards

Research Awards

Amethyst Award, Behavioural Insights Unit (BIU), Ontario Government, 2015

Honors and Fellowships

AMA Sheth Doctoral Consortium Fellow, University of Washington, 2012

fMRI Decision Neuroscience Workshop Fellow, University of Michigan, 2009

Grants & Funding

SSHRC Partnership Grant (Behaviourally Informed Organizations), Collaborator, 2019–2024

D.I. McLeod Summer Research Assistantship, Queen’s University, 2016, 2018, 2021

D.I. McLeod Research Assistantship, Queen’s University, 2014–2021

Smith School of Business Conference Funding, 2016–2017

Michael Lee-Chin Institute for Corporate Citizenship Research Grant, 2011, 2014

Ontario Graduate Scholarship, 2013-2014

Service

Professional Service Activities

Journal Reviewing

  • Journal of Marketing
  • Journal of Consumer Research
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes
  • Journal of Business Research (2015 Outstanding Reviewer)
  • Marketing Letters
  • Ethics and Behavior
  • Social Psychology
  • Canadian Journal of Administrative Sciences

Conference Reviewing

  • Brand and Brand Relationships Conference
  • Association of Consumer Research Conference
  • Association of Consumer Research European Conference
  • Association of Consumer Research Asia-Pacific Conference
  • Society of Consumer Psychology Conference

Grant/Scholarship Reviewing

  • Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Insight Grants
  • Fonds de recherche du Québec – Société et culture Scholarships
  • Mitacs Accelerate Research Proposals

Other Service Activities

Conference Organizer

  • Southern Ontario Behavioral Decision Research, Co-Chair, 2017

Program Committee              

  • Southern Ontario Behavioral Decision Research, 2019–2021

Profesional Affiliations

  • Association for Consumer Research (ACR)
  • Association for Psychological Science (APS)
  • Behavioral Science and Policy Association (BSPA)
  • Society for Consumer Psychology (SCP)
  • Society for Judgment and Decision Making (SJDM) 

University Service

  • EDII Research and Thought Leadership Working Group, Smith School of Business, 2020–2021
  • Subject Pool and Behavioral Lab Committee, Smith School of Business, 2015–2017, 2018–2019, 2020–2021
  • Session Leader, Smith Doctoral Consortium, 2014, 2016–2020
  • Speaker Series Organizer, Marketing, 2015–2017, 2018–2019
  • Undergraduate Curriculum Committee, Smith School of Business, 2016–2017
  • Inter-Collegiate Business Competition, Judge, 2014, 2015, 2018, 2020
  • Queen’s Entrepreneurs Competition, Judge 2014, 2015