Psychological and Behavioural Science

Psychological and Behavioural Sciences give us the tools to understand the reasoning behind people’s actions and non-actions. We investigate the relationship between social, psychological and behavioural processes on the one hand, and organisational, cultural, economic, and political dimensions on the other.

Discover the psychological drivers of human behaviour across different contexts, ages and cultures

With focus areas ranging from behavioural and experimental economics, psychology, judgment and decision-making to organisational, marketing and consumer behaviour, and well-being, we apply our interdisciplinary research to pressing issues across the globe.

Insights from Psychological and Behavioural Sciences help us tackle global health issues such as obesity, sedentary lifestyles, and alcohol and drug abuse. How can we develop new psychological and behavioural frameworks to tackle challenges like these and to better assess and improve patient experiences within our current health systems?

We investigate ordinary behaviours and the psychological rationale behind them. How can we measure happiness and well-being? What are the direct and indirect influences of childhood experiences on adult life satisfaction? And how does poverty affect people’s decision-making processes?

Our aim is to conduct research which impacts policy, business, and society. We focus on what’s happening in the world today and try to understand and address the complex attitudes that define the public’s view.

One of our recent projects, for example, has studied driver’s behaviour. How do drivers conceptualise and negotiate their space on the road? Understanding existing dynamics like these, will help us assess the impact of future technologies, such as autonomous vehicles.

Who we work with

We pool together expertise from departments at LSE, such as the Department of Psychological and Behavioural Science, the Behavioural Science Hub, and the Department of Social Policy.

Areas of expertise

Health and well-being

What we do:

Conducting research that explores the benefits or negative effects of human behaviour for health and subjective well-being, as well as the grounds of happiness.

Examples of our work:

What Predicts a Successful Life? A Life-Course Model of Well-Being
Department for Work and Pensions, 2013

Core experts:

>   Dr Kate Laffan
>   Professor Paul Dolan
>   Professor Richard Layard

Cultural behaviour

What we do:

Conducting research that explores the organisational and working culture of companies, as well as the links between culture and social behaviour in all kinds of contexts.

Examples of our work:

Government Teacher Professional Development Programme – Consulting Advice
Reach to Teach (R2T), 2019

Flag it Up Campaign
Four Communications Group  & Home Office, 2019

Developing a complaints analysis tool for the West Midlands Police
Behavioural Insights Team, 2018

Optimizing safety Culture Measurement in Fenner
Fenner PLC, 2018

Developing a Complaint Coding System
HM Courts & Tribunals Service, 2017

Innovation Process Design Support
EDF Energy, 2016

Core experts:

>   Dr Alex Gillespie
>   Dr Kate Laffan
>   Dr Michael Muthukrishna
>   Professor Saadi Lahlou
>   Dr Tom Reader

Social psychology

What we do:

Conducting research on the factors that influence individual behaviour in the presence of others, i.e. in social situations.

Examples of our work:

Autonomous Vehicles - Negotiating a Place on the Road
Goodyear, 2016

The Ripple Effect of Drivers' Behaviour on the Road
Goodyear, 2015

Consistency and Cognitive Influences on the Expert Judgement of Environmental Health Officers: An Experimental Study
Food Standards Agency, 2015

Core experts:

>   Dr Chris Tennant
>   Dr Dario Krpan
>   Professor Martin W Bauer
>   Professor Saadi Lahlou

Behavioural economics

What we do:

Conducting research that studies the impact of human psychology, behaviour and social live on the economic decisions that we make at the individual, organisational and institutional level.

Examples of our work:

Workshop on business and promotion of social good through behavioural science

How Poverty Affects People's Decision-making Processes
Joseph Rowntree Foundation, 2017

Core experts:

>   Dr Grace Lordan
>   Dr Matteo M Galizzi
>   Dr Jennifer Sheehy-Skeffington

»  Get in touch to find out how we can collaborate