We welcome 3 new coworkers – meet Maria, Payam, and Lena

Natalie Kamra-KregertNudgd

We are very happy to welcome our three new coworkers! Get to know Maria Novik, Payam Shaker, and Lena Soehle by reading their interviews below. We appreciate that so many want to do an internship with us, we believe it is important to collaborate with the academy.

Maria Novik is our Project Assistant from Stockholm. Maria will strengthen the team’s competence regarding sustainable solutions to environmental issues with her education in environmental science. Maria’s passion, creative joy, and ability to communicate intricate information in an easy-to-understand way make her a perfect addition to the team.

Maria Novik, Project Assistant, Nudgd

Why do you think it is interesting to work with sustainability?

What made me interested in the environmental field and later sustainability goes all the way back to my childhood and somehow a spiritual connection to nature and its magic. As a surgeon, my father always used to talk about the human body as optimal, where minimal impact is best to avoid complications. I look at our outer body, the planet, and the environment similarly and have always had great respect for the complexity of nature – just as an analogy to the human body. From later having studied environmental science, it now feels like the natural step to put my effort into the solution-oriented work on environmental health.

What made you interested in nudging and behavioral science?

As a student, I was chairman of the Climate Students in Halmstad, where we tried to put together the findings of environmental research and the actual physical environment on campus – where the research was conducted and taught. However, integrating it better is harder said than done, and one quickly learned that creativity and behavior were the way forward.

Early on, I also noticed that in the area of ​​sustainability, many people in Sweden are well aware of risks and environmental problems, but still tend to ask themselves and each other: But what do we do? Somehow, within our social norms and societies, ‘information overload’ makes people lean on old habits. The same applies to health issues – it is easier said than done. Getting into behavioral sciences made me realize that there’s an intention gap between what we want to do and what we actually do. This led me into HOW to help behaviors – a nudge, a little helping push.

Which is your favorite nudge and why?

In addition to my delight in the fresh start effect and default settings, my favorite right now is probably the communicative entrance mat that encourages the use of stairs. It’s great to be reminded of something really simple and effective, but easily overlooked when you have something else in your head on the go.

Payam Shakeris our IT assistant. Payam describes himself as being open to new challenges, structured, and curious to learn new things. His qualities mean he will fit right in at Nudgd and we are very excited about his contribution to our developments through various IT projects.

Payam Shaker, IT Assistant, Nudgd

What added value can you bring to the organization?

I started my education in August 2020, after a few years of experience in another industry, restaurants. It was my interest in trying new things and the desire to have a very creative job that led me to IT. During my education at the Swedish Academy of Commerce, I learned system design, web development with different tools and languages, and, last but not least, agile working methods. Now, working at Nudgd is a unique opportunity where you not only learn cooperation and effective teamwork but also deepen your knowledge through interesting projects. By contributing to assigned tasks in the team, I grow into my role as a professional system developer. My curiosity, ambition to learn new things, and structured attitude towards problem-solving are what I contribute to the team!

Why do you think it is interesting to work at a sustainability-focused company liked Nudgd?

At Nudgd, it is possible to contribute to sustainable solutions that make society a better place! Nudgd is a company where smart IT projects connect with new ideas, such as behavioral design, to enable sustainable choices and measurable behavior change. Here, there is a good opportunity to contribute with my knowledge in coding, advanced data management, and documentation, among other things. This means that I have the chance to both develop my skills in IT and be part of a sustainability-focused company that really wants to make a difference!

Which is your favorite nudge and why?

SMART TRAVEL HABITS! It’s my number 1 nudge so far! It has always been interesting and important for me to know how climate-friendly my travels are. Smart Travel Habits can give such an awareness of travels. For example, it shows information about your means of transportation (car, public transport, bicycle, etc.), how long you travel, how much energy/fuel that is used and of what type, how often you travel, etc. In this way, you can assess the environmental friendliness of your travels and make smart choices in the future when it comes to traveling, which is very important for us who care about the climate!

Lena Söhle is our Research Assistant and she joins us from Germany! Lena is strengthening the team’s competence in nudging and behavior design, and we know she is a great fit with her large ambition to make the world a better place. Lena is also our first international team member and a very good reason for switching the company’s internal language to English.

Lena Söhle, Research Assistant, Nudgd

What made you interested in behavioral science and nudging?

I became interested in behavioral science many years ago. It all started when I wanted to learn more about the way the human brain works and what kind of shortcuts it takes. It is one of the reasons why I wanted to study psychology in the first place. I learned about nudging at university. For one semester I took a major in behavioral economics, a nudging project concerning sustainability was part of it. I was from the beginning very excited about it, how it combines my strive for making the world a better place with the help of behavioral analysis.

Why do you want to work with sustainability?

I was always a person being concerned about the impact humans have on this world. It might be correlated to the generation I was born in. It seems like the majority of people realize that climate change is real and that it is important to do everything we can to help to slow it down. Reports like the IPCC Sixth Assessment Report help with seeing the urgency and importance of it. Work-wise I wanted to do something I will feel good about, no matter how small my part might be, I felt a general urge to contribute to a more sustainable world.

Which is your favorite nudge and why?

This one is quite funny, it is also the first one that made me really understand what nudging is about and how it works. The nudge is a urinal fly- helping to have a better aim for the toilette when using it. It really made me understand how something very simple can have large effects. Besides this funny one, I like self-nudges that help me become a more efficient person.

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