Andreas Kappes

Role or PositionAndreas Kappes

Distinguished Research Fellow

Research Interests

Andreas is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the Psychology and Neuroscience of Altruism, a Uehiro Centre research project, in collaboration with the Department of Experimental Psychology, and funded by the Wellcome Trust.  He received his Ph.D. in Social Psychology from the University of Hamburg and thereafter was a Post-Doctoral Fellow at New York University and University College London, funded by the German Research Foundation. In his work, he uses experimental psychological as well as neuroscientific methods to investigate the tools that give people control over their lives. When people make decisions, automatic biases and intuitions often suggest solutions that are not in one’s best interest, or might even run counter to important beliefs, such as the moral values people hold. Understanding such biases and intuitions enables the development of tools that allow people to control them. In his Ph.D. work, he studied how the integration of obstacles into future thinking changes automatic processes underlying the pursuit of goals. Thereafter, he studied learning biases that help people sustain unrealistic beliefs (e.g., optimism) even when people a) face contradicting information, b) when they encounter contradicting options from other people, c) or receive ambiguous information from multiple sources. He also examines how and under what conditions moral intuitions that guide moral decisions change. And most recently, he started to look at biases in learning about the consequences of one’s actions for others.