January 12, 2018

This one-day event will bring together scholars from across the social sciences who are using natural language processing and related tools to better understand human behavior.

The inaugural Behavioral Insights from Text Conference will be held at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia on Friday, January 12th, 2018. It is an interdisciplinary event for researchers across disciplines who are interested in using textual analysis and natural language processing to extract behavioral insight from textual data. The conference will feature a full day of presentations.

The conference is hosted by the Wharton Risk Management and Decision Processes Center.

Keynote Speakers

Lillian Lee

Professor of Computer Science and of Information Science, Cornell University; Co-Editor-in-Chief, Transactions of the ACL


Lillian Lee is a professor of computer science and of information science at Cornell University, and the co-Editor-in-Chief of the Transactions of the ACL. Her research interests include natural language processing and computational social science. She is the recipient of the inaugural Best Paper Award at HLT-NAACL 2004 (joint with Regina Barzilay), a citation in “Top Picks: Technology Research Advances of 2004” by Technology Research News (also joint with Regina Barzilay), and an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship; and in 2013, she was named a Fellow of the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI). Her group’s work has received several mentions in the popular press, including The New York Times, NPR’s All Things Considered, and NBC’s The Today Show, and one of her co-authored papers was publicly called “boring” by Youtubers Rhett and Link in a video viewed over 2.4 million times.

James W. Pennebaker 

Regents Centennial Chair of Psychology and the Executive Director of Project 2021 at the University of Texas at Austin


James W. Pennebaker is the Regents Centennial Chair of Psychology and the Executive Director of Project 2021 at the University of Texas at Austin. He and his students are exploring the links between emotional experiences, natural language, and physical and mental health. His most recent research focuses on how everyday language reflects basic social and personality processes. Author or editor of 9 books and over 250 articles, Pennebaker has received numerous awards and honors. Beginning in 2016, he has assumed the leadership of Project 2021, a program to change the way the University of Texas thinks about and delivers undergraduate education.

Wharton Organizers


Jonah Berger

Associate Professor of Marketing
(215) 898-8249


Robert Meyer

Frederick H. Ecker/MetLife Insurance Professor; Professor of Marketing; Co-Director, Risk Management, Decision Processes Center
(215) 898-1826