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International Max Planck Research School

on Adapting Behavior in a Fundamentally Uncertain World

Involved People

PhD Students

Simón Algorta

I am interested in sequential decision problems. Conventionally they are modelled as markov decision processes and solved using dynamic programming or reinforcement learning algorithms. Structures in this problems can help develop heuristic strategies to solve them better and in simpler ways. It is tightly linked to the study of fast and frugal decision heuristics and ecological rationality.

Simón Algorta
Amalia Alvarez Benjumea

Social norms, experimental social science and social network analysis. My main research focus is how behaviour spread in a network and how certain structures affect the emergence and change of norms and conventions.

Amalia Alvarez Benjumea
Nadine Bläser

The topics of my thesis are Leniency Programmes in Antitrust Law. Leniency Programmes were firstly introduced in the United States of America, followed by the EU and Germany as a new tool to fight cartels. They offer an incentive to reveal information on the existence of a cartel before or after the Antitrust Authorities have carried out an investigation by offering an exemption or a reduction … (more)

Nadine Bläser
Deliah Sarah Bolesta

Astrid Buba

How people cope with problems in life has been shown to be important for their psychological health. Coping strategies which acknowledge the problem and develop optimistic step-by-step solutions thereby are more functional than strategies like denial or downward comparison. You will know from experience that facing up to failure is much harder than denying it. But what exactly gives you the … (more)

Astrid Buba
Konstantin Chatziathanasiou

Constitutional Law, Experimental Law and Economics

Konstantin Chatziathanasiou
Christiane Ehses-Friedrich

People often have to make decisions in situations, where they face a lack of information about the consequences of their action. Thus, reducing this uncertainty by gathering information improves the decision making process and the outcome. Communication with an expert is one way to ameliorate the informational status. However, often the interests of a decision maker and an expert are not … (more)

Michael Edem Fiagbenu

Current Research Focus:
-Negativity Bias, Learning and Attitude Formation
-Threat Perception, Risk attitudes & Self-control
-Social inequality and status hierarchies
-Money attitudes and money-making motives
-Personality traits and sociopolitical ideology

General Research Interests:
-Cognitive Functioning: learning, memory & decision-making
-Inter/Intra-group relations (emotions, conflicts … (more)

Lars Freund

- Mechanism Design
- Behavioral and Experimental Economics
- Insurance

Lars Freund
Minou Ghaffari

My research interests include Bevioral Economics and Decision Making. I am especially focusing on Decision Making in social contexts and the influence of attention on decisions regarding social preferences. Using Eye-Tracking I am trying to uncover the underlying cognitive mechanisms of Decision Making.

Minou Ghaffari
Andre Grimes

My doctoral research focuses on the question of how perceptual cues of social category membership (i.e. age, race. and sex) work individually and in tandem to influence social category biases in evaluation and decision making. Employing an ecological framework, I also focus on how goals (e.g. gain or loss avoidance) and construal context may calibrate bias. In particular I emphasize social … (more)

Andre Grimes
Slieman Halabi

Intergroup relation
Social Categorization

Slieman Halabi
Carina Hausladen

-Behavioral and Experimental Economics
-Experimental Ethics
-Heuristic Decision Making
-Value-Based Decision Making

Svenja Hippel

- Behavioral and Experimental Economics
- Law and Economics
- Applied Microeconomic Theory
- Mechanism Design
- Information Economics
- Public Economics

Svenja Hippel
Leonard Hoeft

-Behavioral Law and Economics
-Legal Philosophy & Theory
-Moral Philosophy & Psychology

Elisa Hofmann

- Participative pricing mechanisms on markets, especially Pay-What-You-Want
- Behavioral and Experimental Economics
- Game Theory
- Social Preferences
- Economics of Innovations

Elisa Hofmann
Giorgi Jvarsheishvili

Current research focus:
Incentives for Task Performance
Creativity and Endowment effects
Contests and Tournaments
Intra and inter-group Cooperation and Competition

General interests:
Behavioral and Experimental Economics
Social and Cognitive Psychology
Economics of Innovation

Giorgi Jvarsheishvili
Katharina Klement

Carlos Kurschilgen

Part of my PhD project focuses on understanding the components of legitimacy and peoples’ perception of different sources of legitimacy. To better understand these factors I am approaching my research on an interdisciplinary basis combining insights from Political Science, Experimental Economics and Law as well as Psychology and relying in particular on online survey experiments and … (more)

Carlos Kurschilgen
Lisa Lenz

Tanmoy Majilla

Wladislaw Mill

Current research focus:
- Spiteful behavior in auctions (theoretical and experimental)
- Cooperation under group size uncertainty
- Abusive behavior
- Naivety in the evolution of cooperation

General interests:
-Behavioral & Experimental Economics
-Game & Decision Theory
-Mechanism Design
-Evolutionary Economics
-Cooperation and Social Dilemmas

Wladislaw Mill
Laxmi Natarajan

Individuals' decision to enter self-employment is a decision made under uncertainty, and is affected by economic as well as non-economic factors, and my research addresses certain questions relating to new ventures. Economists are intrigued by the Entry Puzzle, or why individuals choose to quit wage employment to start their own ventures in the face of high failure rates. Another question that … (more)

Laxmi Natarajan
Henning Prömpers

Experimental studies of incomplete contracts and insolvency (at the moment especially opportunism during private insolvency).

Henning Prömpers
Rima-Maria Rahal

My research focuses on the underlying mechanisms of social decision making. Aiming to track such processes through physiological measurements, I am working on uncovering information search patterns in intergroup social dilemmas depending on interindividual differences and situational influences.

Rima-Maria Rahal
Martin Rosenauer

- Manuskript 1: Entstehung der körperlichen Anteile der Depression aus der ersten Phase des Moro Reflex
- Manuskript 2: Entstehung des Zahlensinns (engl. „number sense“ nach Dehaene) aus der Hand-Auge-Koordination
- Manuskript 3: In Vorbereitung, Therapie von Broca-Aphasie über die rechte Hand, Pilotstudie abgeschlossen

Martin Rosenauer
Andre Schmelzer

market design
behavioral finance

Andre Schmelzer
Alexander Schneeberger

- Behavioral Economics
- Experimental Economics
- Personal Norms, Social Norms and Social Preferences

Cornelius Schneider

Behavioral and Experimental Economics, Public Finance, Taxation

Cornelius Schneider
Maj-Britt Sterba

Behavioural economics and game theory
Moral behaviour
Computational economics
Market design

Maj-Britt Sterba
Christina Strobel

- Behavioral and Experimental Economics
- Experimental Game Theory
- Individual characteristics and their influence on contests
- Performance measurement and Incentives

Christina Strobel
Stephan Tontrup

My studies analyze the interplay of legal institutions, empirical fairness theories, cognition and culture.

Procedural Fairness
Governance relies on recourses it cannot enforce; by respecting elements of procedural fairness like transparency, participation and neutrality it can motivate voluntary cooperation and compliance. We present evidence from as different domains as democratic voting … (more)

Stephan Tontrup
Daniel Toribio Flórez

Lame Ungwang

My interests lie at the nexus of behavioral, experimental economics, and development economics, and more specifically:
- norms in shaping risk preferences;
- cultural values and market exposure in decision-making in experimental games; and
- the economics of innovation.

Eugenio Verrina

Behavioral and Experimental Economics:
social preferences, moral behavior, tax evasion, experimental methodology

Eugenio Verrina
Charley Wu

I am studying how humans explore and acquire information from uncertain environments, by building upon previous research on information search and information foraging.

This research has immediate applications to many real-world search problems, such as high-dimensional optimization problems in Machine Learning, where no known algorithms can guarantee finding a global optimum.

Charley Wu
Pantelis Pipergias Analytis
Gulnaz Anjum
Florian Artinger
Daniel Barkoczi
Nicolai Bodemer
Robert Böhm
Stojan Davidovic
Linan Diao
Jieyao Ding
Katharina Eckartz
Mike Farjam
Nadine Fleischhut
Hanjo Hamann
Yoan Hermstrüwer
Jana Jarecki
Magdalena Kaczmarek
Juliane Kämmer
Serhiy Kandul
Marco Kleine
Charlotte Klempt
Hannes Koppel
Sebastian Krügel
Michael Kurschilgen
Pascal Langenbach
Laura Lyhs
Christoph March
Isabel Marcin
Alexander Morell
Jan Multmeier
Olexandr Nikolaychuk
Ayu Okvitawanli
Marian Panganiban
Azzurra Ruggeri
Lauri Sääksvuori
Katrin Schmelz
Jolene Tan
Andra Toader
Matthias Uhl
Ulrike Vollstädt
Jenny Volstorf
Ori Weisel
Johannes Weisser
Benedikt Werner
Fabian Winter
Gaoneng Yu
Georg Zaklan
Lilia Zhurakhovska
Monika Ziolkowska

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