Portrait image for Alicea Lieberman

Alicea Lieberman

Assistant Professor of Marketing
“I am passionate about interdisciplinary approaches and committed to harnessing behavioral research to impact policy and improve societal health and well-being.”
Areas of Expertise:
  • Behavior Change
  • Consumer Behavior
  • Health Behavior
  • Judgment and Decision Making
  • Policy
  • Social Influence

Alicea (Allie) Lieberman’s research focuses on judgment and decision making, with an emphasis on motivation, health and behavior change. “I explore the mechanisms underlying behavior change, specifically: examining when and why people initiate behaviors; the cognitive processes underlying behavioral persistence; and the role of social influence in behavior change,” she says. She draws on theories and frameworks from marketing, social and cognitive psychology, behavioral economics and public health to understand the cognitive, social and environmental processes that influence behavior.

One current project investigates why people often fail to persist for long enough in beneficial daily behaviors like exercise and hygiene. “Many such beneficial behaviors require minimal attention, so a mismatch occurs between attentional demands and available resources, causing people to experience boredom and stop prematurely,” Lieberman explains. “Capturing and sustaining excess attention in a concurrent task balances this attentional mismatch and increases persistence in the beneficial behavior.”

Lieberman’s other work investigates the role of social influence in behavior change. In research published by Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Lieberman and colleagues examine how a subtle change to a choice context influences perceptions of social norms and behavioral compliance. “We find that framing an incentive as a surcharge (versus a discount) signals to individuals that the incentivized behavior is more of a social norm — motivating them to carry out the incentivized behavior in an effort to fit in,” she says. This research offers a new perspective on how incentive frames can affect behavior and contributes to both organizational policy and practice by expanding the social norms messaging tool kit.

In the classroom, Lieberman strives to create an inclusive learning environment in which students feel engaged and inspired. “I enjoy cultivating fun, interactive discussions in the classroom — using plenty of real-world examples, news stories and current events — during which students learn from not only the course content, but also from one another,” she says.

Lieberman joined the faculty of the UCLA Anderson School of Management in 2021 as an assistant professor of marketing. She most recently served as a postdoctoral scholar at UC San Diego’s Rady School of Management. Prior to pursuing her doctoral studies, Lieberman worked as a research analyst at RTI International, where she evaluated state and federal behavior change marketing campaigns on a variety of health topics. Much of Lieberman’s current work draws on her experience in behavioral science and public health in an effort to improve health and well-being.

In recognition of her research on increasing colorectal cancer screening rates among the underserved, Lieberman earned the UC San Diego Rady School of Management’s Interdisciplinary Research Award.


Ph.D. Marketing, 2020, Rady School of Management, University of California, San Diego

MPH Health Behavior, 2010, Gillings School of Public Health, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

B.A. International Relations, 2008, The George Washington University

Journal Publications


Williams, Elanor F., Alicea Lieberman, and On Amir (forthcoming), “Perspective Neglect: Inadequate Perspective Taking Limits Consumer Coordination,” Judgment and Decision Making.


Lieberman, Alicea, Ayelet Gneezy, Emily Berry, Stacie Miller, Mark Koch, Keith Argenbright, and Samir Gupta (2021), “The Effect of Deadlines on Cancer Screening Completion: A Randomized Controlled Trial,” Scientific Reports, 11(13876).


Lieberman, Alicea and Kristen Duke (2020), “Why We’re Incentivized by Discounts and Surcharges,” Harvard Business Review.


Lieberman, Alicea, Kristen Duke, and On Amir (2019), “How Incentive Framing Can Harness the Power of Social Norms,” Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 151, 118-131.


Lieberman, Alicea and Juliana Schroeder (2019), “Two Social Lives: How Differences Between Online and Offline Interaction Influence Social Outcomes,” Current Opinion in Psychology, 30, 16-21.


Lieberman, Alicea, Ayelet Gneezy, Emily Berry, Stacie Miller, Mark Koch, Bijal A. Balasubramanian, Keith Argenbright, and Samir Gupta (2019), “Financial Incentives to Promote Colorectal Cancer Screening: A Longitudinal Randomized Control Trial,” Cancer, Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, 28, 1902-1908.


Jetelina, Katelyn, Joshua Yudkin, Stacy Miller, Emily Berry, Alicea Lieberman, Samir Gupta, and Bijal Balasubramanian (2019), “Patient-reported barriers to completing a diagnostic colonoscopy following abnormal fecal immunochemical test among uninsured patients,” Journal of General Internal Medicine, 9, 1730-1736.


Kim, Annice. E., Tim Hopper, Sean Simpson, Jim Nonnemaker, Alicea Lieberman, Heather Hansen, and Lauren Porter (2015), “Using Twitter Data to Gain Insights into E-cigarette Marketing and Locations of Use: An Infoveillance Study,” Journal of Medical Internet Research, 17, e251.


Robles, Brenda., Jon L. Blitstein, Alicea Lieberman, Noel C. Barragan, Lauren N. Gase, and Tony Kuo (2015), “The Relationship Between Amount of Soda Consumed and Intention to Reduce Soda Consumption Among Adults Exposed to the Choose Health LA ‘Sugar Pack’ Health Marketing Campaign,” Public Health Nutrition, 18, 2582-2591.


Kim, Annice E., Alicea Lieberman, and Daniel Dench (2014), “Crowdsourcing Data Collection of the Retail Tobacco Environment: Case Study Comparing Data From Crowdsourced Workers to Trained Data Collectors,” Tobacco Control, 24, e6-e9.


Other Publications and Book Chapters 


Lieberman, Alicea and Juliana Schroeder (2020), “Increasing Social Connection While ‘Social Distancing,’” The Behavioral Scientist.


Lieberman, Alicea, Andrea C. Morales, and On Amir (2019), “Collecting Data From the Field: Using Field Experiments and Experiments-In-the-Field to Increase Research Validity,” In Handbook of Research Methods in Consumer Psychology, eds. P. Herr, P. & N. Schwarz. Abingdon, UK: Routledge.