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Ralph Hertwig is the Director of the Center of Adaptive Rationality (ARC) at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development in Berlin. Before taking on his role as an MPI director in 2012, Hertwig was a professor for cognitive and decision sciences and later dean at the University of Basel, Psychology Department. Early in his career, he was a researcher at Columbia University, University of Chicago, and the MPI’s Center for Adaptive Behavior and Cognition. He has been awarded several prizes for his research and teaching. His research focuses on models of bounded rationality such as simple heuristics, on decisions from experience, on deliberated ignorance, and on boosting competences.

Dr. Shyam Sunder is the James L. Frank Professor of Accounting, Economics, and Finance at the Yale School of Management and Professor in the Department of Economics. He is a renowned accounting theorist and experimental economist. His research contributions include financial reporting, information in security markets, statistical theory of valuation, and design of electronic markets. He is a pioneer in the fields of experimental finance and experimental macroeconomics. Dr. Sunder has won many awards for his research that includes ten books and more than 200 articles in the leading journals of accounting, economics and finance, as well as in popular media. Dr. Sunder’s current research includes the problem of structuring U.S. and international accounting and auditing institutions to obtain a judicious and efficient balance between regulatory oversight and market competition. He is a past president of the American Accounting Association, former director of the Millstein Center for Corporate Governance and Performance at Yale, honorary research director of Great Lakes Institute of Management in Chennai, and distinguished fellow of the Center for Study of Science and Technology Policy in Bengaluru.


Dr Konstantinos Katsikopoulos is currently associate professor at the University of Southampton. Previously, Konstantinos was a visiting assistant professor at MIT and deputy director at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development. He works on integrating standard decision theory with the simple rules of thumb people actually use. He has engaged with government and businesses on problems, characterized by complexity and uncertainty, in economics, management, and health. Konstantinos’s work has been funded by organizations such as the German Science Foundation and the European Network for Excellence, published in journals such as Psychological Review and the European Journal of Operational Research, and covered by newspapers and magazines such as the Tageszeitung and Science News. He serves on the editorial board of the journal Judgment and Decision Making.

Shenghua Luan is the principal investigator of the Risk And Uncertainty Management (RAUM) lab at the Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS). The start fund of the lab comes from a “Pioneer 100 Talents Program, Category A (Academic Leaders)” grant awarded to Shenghua by the CAS. Shenghua is a cognitive psychologist who has a wide range of interests in judgment and decision-making research, including heuristics in judgment and decision making, group decision processes, wisdom of the crowds, organizational and managerial decision-making, human cooperative behavior, risk communications, and sports and business forecasting. In his research, Shenghua combines the descriptive approach (i.e., how do people make judgments and decisions?) with a prescriptive one (i.e., how can we help people improve their judgments and decisions?) and applies a variety of methods for investigation (e.g., human experiments, cognitive modeling, computer simulations, and analysis of archival data). Findings of Shenghua’s research have been published in top-tier journals, including Psychological Review, the Academy of Management Journal, Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, and Journal of Behavioral Decision Making.

Arun Maira has an unusual combination of hands-on leadership experience in both the private sector and the public sector, as well as in consulting with leaders in the corporate, government, and social development sectors in many countries. He worked with the Tata Group for 25 years in many leadership and board level positions in in India and abroad. He was CEO of Innovation Associates in the USA, and Chairman of the Boston Consulting Group in India. He was on the advisory boards of the UN Global Compact and the Global Economic Symposium.

Arun Maira served as a Member of the erstwhile Planning Commission of India from 2009 to 2014. Presently, he is Chairman of HelpAge International.

He has written several books, including Remaking India: One Country, One Destiny; Shaping the Future: Aspirational Leadership in India and Beyond; Redesigning the Aeroplane While Flying: Reforming Institutions; and Listening for Well-Being: Conversations with People Not Like Us. His most recent book is, Transforming Systems: Why the World needs a new Ethical Toolkit.

Michelle McDowell is a research scientist at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development and the Harding Center for Risk Literacy. Her research focuses on promoting balanced and transparent risk communication formats to facilitate decision making. Her recent focus has been on determining how best to summarise medical evidence to support understanding, and to address challenges to the translation of evidence for use in decision tools. She is interested in improving the visual communication of information, and designing more ecological presentation formats that improve comprehension. She is also interested in understanding what people know about the risks they face in the digital world.

Kavitha Ranganathan is Associate Professor in the area of Finance and Strategy, at T A Pai Management Institute. Her research is broadly in areas of bounded rationality with applications to simple heuristics in finance,behavioral corporate finance with specific focus on pricing in mergers and acquisitions, corporate governance practices in the context of blockholders and family firms, and recently, on the psychological underpinnings of decisions from experience to improve our understanding for risk communication. Kavitha is also the recipient of the Max Planck India Mobility Grant, a distinction awarded to highly qualified young Indian scientists to visit a Max Planck Institute in Germany for a period of four years. Kavitha also conducts the Winter School on Bounded Rationality since 2017 which is currently in its fourth edition, in collaboration with the Max Planck institute for Human Development, Berlin. Before joining TAPMI, she worked at the National Institute of Securities Market, and been part of the research team for the Financial Sector Legislative Reforms Commission (FSLRC), commissioned by Government of India.

Hersh Shefrin holds the Mario Belotti Chair in the Department of Finance at Santa Clara University’s Leavey School of Business. Professor Shefrin is a pioneer of behavioral finance. He has published widely in the area and writes for both academics and practitioners. Professor Shefrin regularly teaches behavioral finance to both undergraduates and graduates. He often speaks on the subject to portfolio managers, security analysts, and financial planners both in the U.S. and abroad. In 2001 CFO Magazine listed Professor Shefrin among the “Academic Stars of Finance.” A 2003 article appearing in The American Economic Review, by Pierre-Andre Chiappori and Steven Levitt, included Professor Shefrin among the top 15 theorists to have influenced empirical work in microeonomics. Professor Shefrin’s latest book Behavioral Risk Management was published in December 2015. In addition, he is frequently interviewed by the media on financial matters, writes occasional blogs for Forbes and the Huffington Post, and can be followed on Twitter at @HershShefrin

Özgür Simsek is a Senior Lecturer in Machine Learning at the Department of Computer Science at the University of Bath, UK. Her research areas include machine learning, artificial intelligence, network science, and bounded rationality. She received her Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Massachusetts Amherst in 2008. Before joining the University of Bath, she was a Research Scientist at the Center for Adaptive Behavior and Cognition at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development in Berlin, Germany. Her current research interests include the rationality of decision heuristics and the role they can play in autonomous learning and development.

Professor Veeraraghavan has published over 50 papers in international journals. His papers have appeared in The Accounting Review, Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Contemporary Accounting Research, Journal of Banking and Finance, Auditing: A Journal of Practice and Theory, Journal of Macroeconomics, Journal of Empirical Finance, Pacific Basin Finance Journal etc. He has presented his work in top accounting and finance conferences. He was the recipient of the Vice-Chancellor’s Gold Medal (Monash University) for Teaching Excellence. His paper titled “Executive Equity Risk-Taking Incentive and Audit Service Pricing was awarded the 2013 MIT Sloan Asia Conference in Accounting Best Paper Award.


Dirk is a research scientists at the University of Basel and an adjunct research at the MPI for Human Development. His research is broadly concerned with the cognitive processes and representations involved in decision making and semantic memory. His recent work focuses on the psychological and statistical underpinnings of decisions from experience to improve our understanding of real-life decision making and derive implications for policy.

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