ESRC DTC PhD Collaborative Studentship Beyond Introspection

Doctoral Studentships in the Social Sciences

The ESRC Doctoral Training Centre at the University of Warwick is now inviting applications for a ESRC Doctoral Collaborative Studentship involving Warwick Business School (located in the Behavioural Sciences Group) in partnership with Decision Technology Limited, starting from October 2013.

Project Summary

It has been a well-known finding in the psychology of human choice that people’s access to their own beliefs and preferences is often very limited. But many areas of market research and academic inquiry rely on such introspection. In this research project, we aim to examine the problem of introspection in light of new research and explore practical implications. When can introspection be trusted? When are alternative, and typically more costly and time-consuming, methodologies justified? In doing so, we will draw, firstly, on recent theoretical debates concerning the nature of human preferences more generally, and secondly, on more specific studies that explore the role that introspection plays in interpreting our actions and shaping our behaviour and preferences in the future.

The research will be supervised by WBS’s Professor Nick Chater, Professor Daniel Read, and Dr Henry Stott, Managing Director, Decision Technology Limited.


The PhD Studentship is part funded by Decision Technology Limited, a research consultancy dedicated to the study of human decision-making and the development of associated practical and commercial applications. The successful candidate will be based at Decision Technology’s office in London for three months per year and would be expected to commute regularly between WBS and London.

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Candidates should have a minimum 2.1 class undergraduate degree in a relevant discipline (preferably psychology, cognitive sciences, neuroscience, economics or computer science) and ideally a relevant Masters degree, or equivalent research experience in a work setting, as well as an interest in the study of human decision-making with commercial relevance.

Awards available:  1 award available

Funding Details:  The successful applicant will receive full fees and a stipend of £13,590 pa for 3-4 years.

Length of Award: 3-4 years (PhD)

Eligibility:  Available only to applicants who meet the ESRC’s residency requirements. Full ESRC studentship support is normally available only to students who (a) have been ordinarily resident in the UK for the previous three years; (b) other than citizens of EU countries, whose residence during that period has not been wholly or mainly for the purposes of full-time education; and (c) who have permission to reside permanently in the UK. Citizens of EU countries who do not qualify under (a) above will normally receive their fees and not a maintenance grant. For further advice please contact Hazel Rice in the Warwick Social Science DTC:

Application Details: 

The online application form can be accessed at: Please state clearly on the form that you are applying for this project and email Professor Nick Chater ( so that we can identify your application easily.

For queries relating to the application procedure:

For applicants who already have applied for entrance to the WBS Doctoral Programme:

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If you already hold an offer of a place at WBS, please email by 30th April 2013 latest to say you wish to be considered for this studentship.

Deadline:  30th April 2013

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