Ariely was born on 29 April, 1967, in New York City. His upbringing took place in Ramat Hasharon, Israel, where his family moved to when his father completed his education from the United States. Ariely showed early signs of his independence after participating in a youth movement during his high school years, which was termed as the Hanoar Haoved Vehalomed. However, a major turning point in his life occurred during a traditional festival when Ariely was severely injured whilst dealing with flammable materials, suffering from third degree burns in the process which reached out to over seventy percent of his body. This predicament eventually acted as a motivation for Ariely to devote his time and resources to come up with better methods and treatments for patients inflicted with such injuries.
Ariely completed his B.A. in psychology in 1991 from Tel Aviv University. He then managed to obtain his M.A. and Ph.D. in cognitive psychology in the years 1994 and 1996 respectively, this time from the University of North Carolina. Ariely however continued to persist with his academic efforts as he pursued another post doctorate, this time in marketing from Duke University. This was followed by entering the teaching side of academics, as the year 1998 saw Ariely recruited by MIT as professor. After serving the university for 10 years, during which time he attained the honor of being named Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Behavioral Economics at MIT Sloan School of Management, he jumped ship to Duke University. Ariely continues to teach behavioral economics as well as psychology at Duke, emerging as one of the best of his kind in the former, and earned the title of James B. Duke Professor.
Ariely has authored a number of books during the course of his career and thus possesses considerable expertise in this field. His most prominent works include The (Honest) Truth About Dishonesty, The Upside of Irrationality and Predictably Irrational. All three publications turned out to be best sellers. In his books Ariely explains how people can’t help but be irrational even in situations when they are expected to manifest rationality. He studies how this phenomenon is witnessed in business and economic environment, and what implications it does go on to have on decision making by economic agents on matters concerning innovation, strategy and marketing etc.
Having delved in to behavioral economics his entire life, Ariely is considered an expert in determining, or understanding, how people act. In this book The Truth about Dishonesty, he provides a discerning view about our predispositions about dishonesty and urges readers to evaluate themselves in a sincere manner. Such intriguing analysis has made Dan Ariely popular among readers. He has thus managed to contribute to top journals and other scholarly publications in the domains of economics, psychology and business activity. The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Business 2.0, Scientific American, and CNN are amongst the long list of journals and publications he has written for.
Last but not least, Dan Ariely is also a renowned speaker. His TED talks have attracted around 5.4 million listeners. Critics have hailed his ability to present fascinating topics which resonate with the audience, and further execute them in an interactive and authentic manner with a touch of humor as well.