Kicking the Habit

Jonathan Cagen and Peter Boatwright speak about their book

Kicking the Habit

For many, smoking a cigarette with a steamy cup of java in hand is a morning ritual.
      
But lighting up is not an impossible habit to kick, say Carnegie Mellon University researchers.

Engineers and industrial designers studied the challenges of quitting smoking for GlaxoSmithKline's (GSK) Consumer Health Care unit.
 
"When it comes to smoking, our students studied the challenges surrounding both the functional nicotine addiction and the need to modify the emotion-based behavioral addiction as well," said Jonathan Cagan, a professor of mechanical engineering at CMU.
     
The class is called Product Emotion Research.  It's based on innovative ideas shared in the new book "Built to Love — Creating Products that Captivate Customers."

"Built to Love" was written by Cagan and Peter Boatwright of the Tepper School of Business.

"Carnegie Mellon students were not just looking at a product's functionality. They were also looking at the emotional and behavioral experience that comes into play when dealing with addiction," said Boatwright, an associate professor of marketing.
     
Students found that the stigma of therapy, peer pressure and self-esteem issues were just a few of the obstacles to quitting.

To track and quantify smoking behavior, they developed a dynamic model of emotions and needs that included nicotine cessation and behavior modification.
     
"We were thrilled not only with the new insights and opportunities delivered by the students, but also the method used to develop them," said GSK's Karen Scollick.

Scollick is vice president of Behavioral Sciences at GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Health Care of North America.

"The students uncovered new insights about the emotion of smoking cessation, insights that have been informative to us in our ongoing work with this challenging category," she added.
     
GSK already offers a cadre of nicotine replacement therapy products. Scollick said the CMU classwork will help inform ongoing development of exciting new products.



Related Links: Built to Love.com | Tepper School of Business | College of Engineering