Nicoleta Acatrinei is an economist and started her career in banking. The reality of the business world forced her to inquire about the relevance of the assumption of the egoistic nature of homo oeconomicus. This research question became the cornerstone of her academic trajectory covering fields such as public policies, sustainable finance and development, anthropology, moral decision making, work psychology, theology, digital transformation, etc. She received her Ph.D. in 2014 from Swiss Graduate School of Public Administration (IDHEAP), Switzerland, entitled Work motivation and pro-social behavior in the delivery of public services: theoretical and empirical insights (free download, published in 2016 by in Geneva, Switzerland). By combining behavioral economics with work motivation, she shows that intrinsic and extrinsic motivations may coexist simultaneously, and that both types of motivation may foster pro-social and altruist behavior at work, and in society at large. This methodology is valuable in identifying ways to foster pro-social attitudes and behaviors related to sustainable development, impact investing, digital transformation, etc. She has authored books, book chapters and journal articles, includingSaint John Chrysostom and Homo oeconomicus (2008); Let’s talk about money, let’s talk about human nature (2007); The determinants of work motivation in the delivery of public services: the case of the Swiss education sector (2015); and Perspectives of Saint John Chrysostom for the VUCA world. An integrative mindfulness program to cope with managerial challenges in a VUCA world , and most recently “The Human Nature of Homo Oeconomicus: An Anthropological Investigation in the Homilies on the Gospel of Matthew by Saint John Chrysostom, in Studia Patristica ( 2021), vol. 25, pp. 255-268.

Thanks to her multi-disciplinary background she has developed an interdisciplinary research and business activity where she is building impact metrics and evaluation tools for sustainable finance, impact investing and faith-based investment, guidelines for the future of work at the intersection of faith, wellbeing and digital transformation, for public policies promoting sustainable development, SDGs, and social impact economic activities.

She designed a protocol and an economic measurement model for moral decision making and mindfulness to be implemented in companies and organizations in order to increase employees' engagement, prosocial behavior, well-being and ethical behavior. The outcome is an increased capacity of problem-solving and coping with stress with positive outcomes on moral decision-making, innovation, creativity, and performance. Dr. Acatrinei has led several projects  to create metrics for local governments and corporate organizations seeking to promote sustainability, accountability and transparency in their activities.