USIA Fellow Prof. Elke U. Weber

Professor Elke U. Weber is the Honorary/Advisory Psychologist of the United Sigma Intelligence Association. She is a Professor of Psychology and Public Affairs at Princeton University where she holds the Gerhard R. Andlinger Professorship in Energy & the Environment.


Research Philosophy

I believe that psychological theory needs to interface with social problems in a two-way dialogue, proving itself with constructive solutions in real-world settings and being enriched and constrained by those settings. While much of my work draws distinctions between homo economicus and homo sapiens, I also examine individual, group, and cultural differences in time discounting or risk taking and how best to assess and model them. Every research method has strengths and weaknesses, so I approach my questions with a mosaic of answers that draw on lab and field experiments that collect process data, behavioral outcomes, associated brain activation, and more. I then put all of these insights to use by helping individuals or social planners design decision environments that capitalize on the full range of human capabilities and goals to make wise decisions.

Honors and Awards

2020Election to US National Academy of Sciences2018Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science2018Princeton Engineering Commendation List for Outstanding Teaching2016Fellow, American Academy of Arts and Sciences2016Distinguished Achievement Award, Society for Risk Analysis2015Fellow, Society for Experimental Psychology2014“In Honor of” citation, Federation of Associations in Behavioral & Brain Sciences (FABBS): Recognition of “eminent, senior scientists who have made important and lasting contributions to the sciences of mind, brain, and behavior”2012Member, German National Academy of Sciences (Leopoldina)2012Honorary Professorship, Economic Science, Technical University Munich, Germany2011Fellow, Society for Risk Analysis2010Chazen Senior Scholar, Graduate School of Business, Columbia University2009Honorary Doctorate in Psychology, University of Basel, Switzerland2003Academy of Management, Organizational Behavior Division, Best Paper Award2000Chazen International Research Prize, Graduate School of Business, Columbia University1999INFORMS Decision Analysis Society Publication Award1998Fellow, Association for Psychological Science1996Fellow, Division 3 (Experimental Psychology, American Psychological Association1994Outstanding Young Investigator Award, Society for Medical Decision Making1990James S. Kemper Foundation Research Scholar, Graduate School of Business, University of Chicago1988Young Psychologist Award, American Psychological Association, XXIV International Congress, Sydney, Australia1986University of Illinois Instructional Award: “List of Faculty Rated Excellent”1985Natural Science and Engineering Research Council of Canada: Postdoctoral Fellowship1980-1984Natural Science and Engineering Research Council of Canada: Postgraduate Scholarship1980Vanier Award for Academic Excellence, York University

Past Academic Positions and Visiting Professorships

2009 – 2016Earth Institute Professor, Columbia University2009Visiting Professor, Copenhagen Business School2006Visiting Professor, London Business School2003 – 2016Jerome A. Chazen Professor of International Business, Columbia Business School2004Guest Professor, Department of Quantitative Economic Research, University of Fribourg, Switzerland1999 – 2016Professor of Management, Graduate School of Business, and Professor of Psychology, Department of Psychology, Columbia University1995 – 1999Professor, Department of Psychology and Department of Management & Human Resources, Ohio State University1994Professor of Organizational Behavior and Leadership, Guest Chair, Otto Beisheim Graduate School of Corporate Management (WHU), Koblenz, Germany

Other Professional Positions

2013Inaugural Linde Visiting Fellow, Ronald and Maxine Linde Institute for Economic and Management Sciences, California Institute of Technology2012 – 2014Visiting Research Collaborator, Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies, Princeton University2007 – 2008Fellow, Russell Sage Foundation2004 – 2005Chair, Management Division, Graduate School of Business, Columbia University2002Fellow, Wissenschaftskolleg (Institute for Advanced Study), Berlin, Germany1992 – 1993Fellow, Center for Advanced Studies in the Behavioral Sciences, Stanford, CA1988 – 1995Assistant and Associate Professor of Behavioral Science, Center for Decision Research, Graduate School of Business, University of Chicago1985 – 1988Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, University of Illinois at Urbana‑Champaign1984 – 1985Natural Science and Engineering Research Council Post‑Doctoral Fellow, Department of Psychology, University of Toronto

Representative Publications

The selection of publications below contains basic research papers on the questions addressed by my research (“How do finite-capacity information processors judge, decide, act, and live in a world that is only partially predictable and that provides feedback on very variable time scales?”) as well as papers that take those insights into applied settings, mostly in the environmental domain but also for financial (investment or pension savings) decisions.

Weber, E. U. & Johnson, E. J. (2009). Mindful judgment and decision making. Annual Review of Psychology, 60, 53-86. View PDF

Weber, E. U. (2015). Climate change demands behavioral change: What are the challenges? Social Research: An International Quarterly, 82, 561-581. View PDF

Weber, E. U. (2013). Doing the right thing willingly: Behavioral decision theory adn environmental policy. In E. Shafir (Ed), The Behavioral Foundations of Policy, (pp. 380-397). Princeton University Press. View PDF

Weber, E. U., Blais, A.-R.,* & Betz, N. (2002). A domain-specific risk-attitude scale: Measuring risk perceptions and risk behaviors. Journal of Behavioral Decision Making, 15, 263-290. View PDF

Li, Y.,* Johnson, E. J., & Weber, E.U., Enkavi, A.Z., Gao, J., & Zaval, L. (2014). Cognitive ability and knowledge predict real-world financial outcomes. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 112(1), 65-69. View PDF


Profile Source: Professor Elke U. Weber’s official website