Study level


Master of Philosophy


Vacation research experience scheme


Science and Engineering Faculty

School of Mathematical Sciences

Topic status

We're looking for students to study this topic.


Professor Michael Bode
Division / Faculty
Science and Engineering Faculty


The human brain has a proven ability to solve difficult problems. However, recent research in economics and psychology has revealed limits to human cognition. This includes situations where the assumption of an optimal Homo economicus has proven to be incorrect.

Psychologists have called these issues 'cognitive biases' – situations where the human brain makes consistent and particular mistakes. They have spent a lot of time listing them, and testing them to make sure they are real. There are now dozens of observed and measured cognitive biases.

Research activities

These theories are all psychological. We need a mathematical equivalent. This includes a framework for these theories that measures and categorises them.

We want to answer the following questions:

  • How do they fit together into the human perspective on reality?
  • How do they analogise to mathematical concepts?
  • Which of the cognitive biases create the greatest roadblocks to effective decision-making and how do we solve them with models?


We hope to develop a new theory around human cognitive biases.

Skills and experience

We expect you to have some skills or experience with mathematics.


You may be able to apply for a research scholarship in our annual scholarship round.

Annual scholarship round



Contact the supervisor for more information.