Kurvers, Ralf

Main Focus

Head of Research Area Collective Intelligence

  • Collective behaviour
  • Collective intelligence
  • Social networks
  • Personality
  • Behavioral Ecology

Curriculum Vitae

  • Since 2019 External Principal Investigator Excellence Cluster, Science of Intelligence, Technical University, Berlin, Germany
  • Since 2019 Senior Research Scientist, Centre for Adaptive Rationality, MPI for Human Development, Berlin, Germany
  • Since 2015 Research scientist, Centre for Adaptive Rationality, MPI for Human Development, Berlin, Germany
  • 2011-2014 Rubicon Postdoctoral Fellowship, Dept. Fish Biology and Ecology, Leibniz-Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries, Berlin, Germany
  • 2007-2011 PhD Resource Ecology Group, Wageningen University, the Netherlands
  • 2006-2007 Research Associate, Behavioural Ecology of Sexual Signals Group, MPI for Ornithology, Radolfzell, Germany
  • 2005-2006 Postgraduate study Philosophy, Radboud University, Nijmegen, the Netherlands
  • 2003-2005 MSc Ecology and Management, Wageningen University, the Netherlands
  • 1999-2003 BSc Forest and Nature Conservation, Wageningen University, the Netherlands

Selected Publications

  • Kurvers RHJM, Herzog SM, Hertwig R, Krause J, Moussaid M, Argenziano G, Zalaudek I, Carney PA & Wolf M (2019). How to detect high performing individuals and groups: decision similarity predicts accuracy. Science Advances 5: eaaw9011
  • Marshall JAR, Kurvers RHJM, Krause J & Wolf M (2019) Quorums enable optimal pooling of independent judgments. eLife 8:e40368
  • Snijders L, Kurvers RHJM, Krause S, Ramnarine IW & Krause J. Individual and population level drivers of consistent foraging success across environments (2018) Nature Ecology and Evolution 2: 610–1618
  • Krause J, Herbert-Read JE, Seebacher F, Domenici P, Wilson ADM, Marras S, Svendsen MBS, Strömbom D, Steffensen JF, Krause S, Viblanc PE, Couillaud P, Bach P, Sabarros PS, Zaslansky P & Kurvers RHJM (2017) Injury-mediated decrease in locomotor performance increases predation risk in schooling fish. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B 372: 1727
  • Kurvers RHJM, Krause S, Viblanc PE, Herbert-Read JE, Zaslansky P, Domenici P, Marras S, Steffensen JF, Wilson ADM, Couillaud P & Krause J (2017) The Evolution of Lateralization in Group Hunting Sailfish. Current Biology 27: 521-526
  • Kurvers RHJM, Herzog SM, Hertwig R, Krause J, Carney PA, Bogart A, Argenziano G, Zalaudek I & Wolf M (2016) Boosting medical diagnostics by pooling independent judgments. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 113: 8777-8782
  • Kurvers RHJM, Krause J, Croft DP, Wilson ADM & Wolf M (2014) The evolutionary and ecological consequences of animal social networks. Trends in Ecology and Evolution 29: 326-335
  • Kurvers RHJM, van Oers K, Nolet BA, Jonker RM, van Wieren SE, Prins HHT & Ydenberg RC (2010) Personality predicts the use of social information. Ecology Letters 13: 829-837

Grants and Awards

  • 2019-2022: Excellence Cluster, Science of Intelligence Research Grant (€313.476). The Collective Dynamics Underlying Personal and Social Information Integration. TU/MPIB, Berlin, link
  • 2016-2019: Temporary Position for Principal Investigator Grant, German Research Foundation (DFG) (€292.050). The Role of Individual Differences in Collective Behaviour. MPIB, Berlin, link
  • 2011-2014: Rubicon Postdoctoral Fellowship. Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) (€118.080). Title: Who leads, who follows? Linking personality to collective decision making. IGB, Berlin, link
  • 2011: Second Prize PE&RC Best PhD Publication Award (€500)
  • 2011: Second Prize NERN Publication Award. Award for the best scientific paper in ecology and evolution published by a PhD candidate (€500)
  • 2011: Second Prize Centre for Ecosystems Award. Wageningen University (€100)
  • 2006: Thomas More Foundation. Scholarship for postgraduate study philosophy (€5.000). Radboud University, Nijmegen, NL

Reviewing service

Papers (~115 unique manuscripts)

Ecology Letters | Trends in Ecology and Evolution | Current Biology | New England Journal of Medicine | The British Medical Journal | Proceedings of the Royal Society B | Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery & Psychiatry | Evolution and Human Behaviour | Frontiers in Zoology | Current Opinion in Behavioral Sciences | The Quarterly Review of Biology | Journal of Animal Ecology | Biology Letters | Journal of Evolutionary Biology | Animal Behaviour* | Behavioral Ecology | Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology | Oikos | Journal of Theoretical Biology | Journal of Fish Biology | Scientific Reports | Journal of Experimental Biology | Wildlife Biology | Journal of Mammalogy | Environmental Conservation | Axios | Ethology | Ethology, Ecology & Evolution | Behaviour | Computers in Human Behavior | Journal of Behavioral Decision Making | Evolutionary Psychology | Current Zoology | Journal of Field Ornithology | Journal of Applied Ichthyology | PLoS ONE  | BMJ Open | BMC Medical Informatics and Decision Making | Medical Decision Making | Journal of Patient Experience | Royal Society Open Science | PeerJ

* Certificate of Excellence in Reviewing. Animal Behaviour (2014)

Book (chapters)

Animal Social Networks (ed. by Krause, James, Franks & Croft) | The Social Life of Greylag Geese (ed. by Scheiber, Weiss, Hemetsberger, Kotrschal).


Association for the study of Animal Behaviour (ASAB) | Zukunftskolleg University of Konstanz

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