Rui Mata

Adjunct Researcher
mata [at] mpib-berlin [dot] mpg [dot] de

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Personal website: www.ruimata.com

open all Curriculum Vitae

zuklappen Publications

in press

Horn, S. S., Mata, R., & Pachur, T. (in press). Good + bad = ? Developmental differences in balancing gains and losses in decisions from memory. Child Development.

Mata, R., & Frey, R. (in press). The life-span development of risk preference. In R. Hertwig, T. J. Pleskac, T. Pachur, & The Center for Adaptive Rationality, Taming uncertainty. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.


Hertwig, R., Wulff, D. U., & Mata, R. (2019). Three gaps and what they may mean for risk preference. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London: B, Biological Sciences, 374:20180140. doi:10.1098/rstb.2018.0140
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Mata, R., Frey, R., Richter, D., Schupp, J., & Hertwig, R. (2018). Risk preference: A view from psychology. Journal of Economic Perspectives, 32, 155-172. doi:10.1257/jep.32.2.155
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Siegrist, V., Eken, C., Nickel, C. H., Mata, R., Hertwig, R., & Bingisser, R. (2018). End-of-life decisions in emergency patients: Prevalence, outcome, and physician effect. QJM: An International Journal of Medicine, 111, 549-554. doi:10.1093/qjmed/hcy112
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Siegrist, V., Langewitz, W., Mata, R., Maiori, D., Hertwig, R., & Bingisser, R. (2018). The influence of information structuring and health literacy on recall and satisfaction in a simulated discharge communication. Patient Education and Counseling, 101, 2090-2096. doi:10.1016/j.pec.2018.08.008
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van den Bos, W., Bruckner, R., Nassar, M. R., Mata, R., & Eppinger, B. (2018). Computational neuroscience across the lifespan: Promises and pitfalls. Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience, 33, 42-53. doi:10.1016/j.dcn.2017.09.008
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Ackermann, S., Ghanim, L., Heierle, A., Hertwig, R., Langewitz, W., Mata, R., & Bingisser, R. (2017). Information structuring improves recall of emergency discharge information: A randomized clinical trial. Psychology, Health & Medicine, 22, 646-662. doi:10.1080/13548506.2016.1198816
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Frey, R., Pedroni, A., Mata, R., Rieskamp, J., & Hertwig, R. (2017). Risk preference shares the psychometric structure of major psychological traits. Science Advances, 3(10):e1701381. doi:10.1126/sciadv.1701381
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Karrer, T. M., Josef, A. K., Mata, R., Morris, E. D., & Samanez-Larkin, G. R. (2017). Reduced dopamine receptors and transporters but not synthesis capacity in normal aging adults: A meta-analysis. Neurobiology of Aging, 57, 36-46. doi:10.1016/j.neurobiolaging.2017.05.006
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Mata, R., & Hertwig, R. (2017). Towards an ecological perspective on age-performance relations: Adaptation as strategy and niche selection. European Psychologist, 22, 151-158. doi:10.1027/1016-9040/a000292
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Pachur, T., Mata, R., & Hertwig, R. (2017). Who dares, who errs? Disentangling cognitive and motivational roots of age differences in decisions under risk. Psychological Science, 28, 504-518. doi:10.1177/0956797616687729
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Josef, A. K., Richter, D., Samanez-Larkin, G. R., Wagner, G. G., Hertwig, R., & Mata, R. (2016). Stability and change in risk-taking propensity across the adult lifespan. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 111, 430-450. doi:10.1037/pspp0000090
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Mamerow, L., Frey, R., & Mata, R. (2016). Risk taking across the life span: A comparison of self-report and behavioral measures of risk taking. Psychology and Aging, 31, 711-723. doi:10.1037/pag0000124
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Mata, R., Josef, A. K., & Hertwig, R. (2016). Propensity for risk taking across the life span and around the globe. Psychological Science, 27, 231-243. doi:10.1177/0956797615617811
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Wichary, S., Mata, R., & Rieskamp, J. (2016). Probabilistic inferences under emotional stress: How arousal affects decision processes. Journal of Behavioral Decision Making, 29, 525-538. doi:10.1002/bdm.1896
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Yu, J., Mamerow, L., Lei, X., Fang, L., & Mata, R. (2016). Altered value coding in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex in healthy older adults. Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, 8:210. doi:10.3389/fnagi.2016.00210
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Frey, R., Mata, R., & Hertwig, R. (2015). The role of cognitive abilities in decisions from experience: Age differences emerge as a function of choice set size. Cognition, 142, 60-80. doi:10.1016/j.cognition.2015.05.004
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Horn, S. S., Pachur, T., & Mata, R. (2015). How does aging affect recognition-based inference? A hierarchical Bayesian modeling approach. Acta Psychologica, 154, 77-85. doi:10.1016/j.actpsy.2014.11.001
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Mata, R., & Helversen, B. v. (2015). Search and the aging mind: The promise and limits of the cognitive control hypothesis of age differences in search. Topics in Cognitive Science, 7, 416-427. doi:10.1111/tops.12139
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Mata, R., Josef, A. K., & Lemaire, P. (2015). Adaptive decision-making and aging. In T. M. Hess, J. Strough, & C. E. Löckenhoff (Eds.), Aging and decision making: Empirical and applied perspectives (pp. 105-122). New York: Elsevier.

Rieger, M., & Mata, R. (2015). On the generality of age differences in social and nonsocial decision making. The Journals of Gerontology: B, Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences, 70, 200-212. doi:10.1093/geronb/gbt088
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Samanez-Larkin, G. R., Worthy, D. A., Mata, R., McClure, S. M., & Knutson, B. (2014). Adult age differences in frontostriatal representation of prediction error but not reward outcome. Cognitive, Affective, & Behavioral Neuroscience, 14, 672-682. doi:10.3758/s13415-014-0297-4
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Bundorf, M. K., Mata, R., Schoenbaum, M., & Bhattacharya, J. (2013). Are prescription drug insurance choices consistent with expected utility theory? Health Psychology, 32, 986-994. doi:10.1037/a0033517
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Helversen, B. v., Karlsson, L., Mata, R., & Wilke, A. (2013). Why does cue polarity information provide benefits in inference problems? The role of strategy selection and knowledge of cue importance. Acta Psychologica, 144, 73-82. doi:10.1016/j.actpsy.2013.05.007
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Hills, T. T., Mata, R., Wilke, A., & Samanez-Larkin, G. R. (2013). Mechanisms of age-related decline in memory search across the adult life span. Developmental Psychology, 49, 2396-2404. doi:10.1037/a0032272
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Mata, R., Wilke, A., & Czienskowski, U. (2013). Foraging across the life span: Is there a reduction in exploration with aging? Frontiers in Neuroscience, 7:53. doi:10.3389/fnins.2013.00053
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Granacher, U., Muehlbauer, T., Bridenbaugh, S. A., Wolf, M., Roth, R., Gschwind, Y., Wolf, I., Mata, R., & Kressig, R. W. (2012). Effects of a salsa dance training on balance and strength performance in older adults. Gerontology, 58, 305-312. doi:10.1159/000334814
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Helversen, B. v., & Mata, R. (2012). Losing a dime with a satisfied mind: Positive affect predicts less search in sequential decision making. Psychology and Aging, 27, 825-839. doi:10.1037/a0027845
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Mata, R., Hau, R., Papassotiropoulos, A., & Hertwig, R. (2012). DAT1 polymorphism is associated with risk taking in the Balloon Analogue Risk Task (BART). PLoS ONE, 7(6):e39135. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0039135
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Mata, R., Helversen, B. v., Karlsson, L., & Cüpper, L. (2012). Adult age differences in categorization and multiple-cue judgment. Developmental Psychology, 48, 1188-1201. doi:10.1037/a0026084
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Mata, R., Pachur, T., Helversen, B. v., Hertwig, R., Rieskamp, J., & Schooler, L. J. (2012). Ecological rationality: A framework for understanding and aiding the aging decision maker. Frontiers in Neuroscience, 6:19. doi:10.3389/fnins.2012.00019
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Wilke, A., & Mata, R. (2012). Cognitive bias. In V. S. Ramachandran (Ed.), Encyclopedia of human behavior: Vol. 1. A-D (2nd ed., pp. 531-535). London: Academic Press.
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Hills, T., Mata, R., Wilke, A., & Samanez-Larkin, G. R. (2011). Exploration and exploitation in memory search across the life span. In L. Carlson, C. Hölscher, T. Shipley (Eds.), Proceedings of the 33rd Cognitive Science Society Meeting, 991-996. pdf

Mata, R., Josef, A., Samanez-Larkin, G. R., & Hertwig, R. (2011). Age differences in risky choice: A meta-analysis. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 1235, 18-29. doi: 10.1111/j.1749-6632.2011.06200.x pdf

Mata, R., Helversen, B. v., & Rieskamp, J. (2011). When easy comes hard: The development of adaptive strategy selection. Child Development, 82, 687-700. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-8624.2010.01535.x pdf

Mata, R., & Hertwig, R. (2011). How to model age-related motivational reorientations in risky choice: A Comment on Depping and Freund. Human Development, 54, 368-375. doi: 10.1159/000334943 pdf

Mata, R., & Rieskamp, J. (2011). Learning of judgment and decision making strategies. In Dhami, M., Schlottmann, A., Waldmann, M. (Eds.) Judgment and decision making as a skill: Learning, Development and Evolution (pp. 143-168). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pdf

Samanez-Larkin, G.R., Mata, R., Radu, P.T., Ballard, I.C., Carstensen, L.L., & McClure, S.M. (2011). Age differences in striatal delay sensitivity during intertemporal choice in healthy adults. Frontiers in Neuroscience, 5, 126. doi: 10.3389/fnins.2011.00126 pdf

Scheibe, S., Mata, R., & Carstensen, L. L. (2011). Age differences in affective forecasting and experienced emotion surrounding the 2008 U.S. presidential election. Cognition and Emotion, 4, 1-16. doi:10.1080/02699931.2010.545543 pdf


Helversen, B. v., Mata, R., & Olsson, H. (2010). Do children profit from looking beyond looks? From similarity-based to cue-abstraction processes in multiple-cue judgment. Developmental Psychology, 46, 220-229. doi: 10.1037/a0016690 pdf

Mata, R., Helversen, B. v., & Rieskamp, J. (2010). Learning to choose: Cognitive aging and strategy selection learning in decision making. Psychology and Aging, 25, 299-309. doi: 10.1037/a0018923 pdf

Mata, R., & Nunes, L. (2010). When less is enough: Cognitive aging, information search, and decision quality in consumer choice. Psychology and Aging, 25, 289-298. doi: 10.1037/a0017927 pdf


Pachur, T., Mata, R., & Schooler, L. J. (2009). Cognitive aging and the adaptive use of recognition in decision making. Psychology and Aging, 24, 901-915. doi: 10.1037/a0017211 pdf

Mata, R., Wilke, A., & Czienskowski, U. (2009). Cognitive aging and adaptive foraging behavior. Journals of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences, 64B, 474-481. doi:10.1093/geronb/gbp035 pdf


Gaissmaier, W., Schooler, L. J., & Mata, R. (2008). An ecological perspective to cognitive limits: Modeling environment-interactions with ACT-R. Judgment and Decision Making, 3, 278-291. pdf


Mata, R. (2007). Understanding the aging decision maker. Human Development, 50, 359-366.  doi: 10.1159/000109836 pdf

Mata, R., Schooler, L. J. & Rieskamp, J. (2007). The aging decision maker: Cognitive aging and the adaptive selection of decision strategies. Psychology and Aging, 22, 796-810. doi:10.1037/0882-7974.22.4.796 pdf

[Reprinted in Gigerenzer, G., Hertwig, R., & Pachur, T. (Eds.). (2011). Heuristics: The foundations of adaptive behavior. New York: Oxford University Press.]

Schmitt, D. P., Allik, J., McCrae, R. R., Benet-Martinez, V., Alcalay, L., Ault, L., … Zupanèiè, A.  (2007). The geographic distribution of big five personality traits. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 38, 173-212. pdf


Brighton, H. J., Mata, R., & Wilke, A. (2006). Reconciling vague and formal models of language evolution. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 29, 282. pdf


Mata, R. (2005). A neurocomputational approach to decision making and aging. In Duch, W., Kacprzyk, J., Oja, E., Zadrozny, S. (Eds.), Proceedings of the 15th International Conference on Artificial Neural Networks - ICANN 2005 (Springer Lecture Notes in Computer Science, Vol. 3697, pp. 411-416). Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer-Verlag. pdf

Mata, R., Wilke, A., & Todd, P. M. (2005). Adding the missing link back into mate choice research. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 28, 289. pdf

Reimer, T., Mata, R, Katsikopoulos, K., & Opwis, K. (2005). On the interplay between heuristic and systematic processes in persuasion. In B. G. Bara, L. Barsalou, & M. Bucciarelli (Eds.), Proceedings of the Twenty-Seventh Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society (pp. 1833-1838). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum. pdf


Reimer, T., Mata, R., & Stoecklin, M. (2004). The use of heuristics in persuasion: Deriving cues on communicator expertise from message quality. Current Research in Social Psychology, 10, 69-83. pdf

Schmitt, D. P., Alcalay, L., Allensworth, M., Allik, J., Ault, L., Austers, I., ... Zupanèiè, A. (2004). Patterns and universals of adult romantic attachment across 62 cultural regions: are models of self and of other pancultural constructs? Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 35, 367‑402. doi: 10.1177/0022022104266105 pdf

Schmitt, D. P., Alcalay, L., Allik, J., Angleiter, A., Ault, L., Austers, I., ... Zupanèiè, A. (2004). Patterns and universals of mate poaching across 53 nations: The effects of sex, culture, and personality on romantically attracting another person's partner. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 86, 560-584. doi: 10.1037/0022-3514.86.4.560 pdf

Wilke, A. & Mata, R. (2004). Review of How Homo Became Sapiens: On the Evolution of Thinking by Peter Gärdenfors. Evolutionary Psychology, 2, 24-27. pdf


Schmitt, D. P., Alcalay, L., Allik, J., Ault, L., Austers, I., Bennett, K.L., ... Zupanèiè, A.(2003). Universal sex differences in the desire for sexual variety: Tests from 52 nations, 6 continents, and 13 islands. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 85, 85-104. doi: 10.1037/0022-3514.85.1.85 pdf

Schmitt, D.P., Alcalay, L., Allensworth, M., Allik, J., Ault, L., Austers, I., ... Zupanèiè, A. (2003). Are men universally more dismissing than women? Gender differences in romantic attachment across 62 cultural regions. Personal Relationships, 10, 307-331. pdf