Main Focus

Head of Research Area Boosting Decision Making

I study how to boost human judgment and decision making (scienceofboosting.org) by understanding human and machine behavior and how humans themselves understand machines. I combine insights and methods from cognitive science, collective intelligence ("wisdom of crowds"), heuristics, and algorithms. I also work on applications in digital environments (sks.to/rao), medical decision making, and meteorology. Furthermore, I am co-leading an initiative on reconfiguring behavioral science for crisis knowledge management in response to COVID-19 and other, future disruptive events (scibeh.org). 

Curriculum Vitae

  • 2021 – Senior Research Scientist and Head of Research "Area Boosting Decision Making" | Center for Adaptive Rationality (ARC), Max Planck Institute for Human Development, Berlin
  • 2012 – 2021 Researcher | Center for Adaptive Rationality (ARC), Max Planck Institute for Human Development, Berlin; since 2019 Head of Research Area "Boosting Decision Making"
  • 2009 – 2012 Researcher | Cognitive and Decision Sciences, Department of Psychology, University of Basel
  • 2009 Dr. phil. (summa cum laude/with highest praise) | University of Basel, Switzerland
  • 2005 M. Sc. Psychology (summa cum laude/with highest praise) | University of Basel, Switzerland
  • 2003 B. Sc. Psychology (magna cum laude/with great praise) | University of Basel, Switzerland

Five selected, recent publications

* shared authorships / equal contribution  |  $ senior authorship

  • Litvinova*, A., Kurvers, R. H. J. M., Hertwig, R., & Herzog*$, S. M. (2022). How experts' own inconsistency relates to their confidence and between-expert disagreement. Scientific Reports, 12, 9273. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-022-12847-5
  • Lorenz-Spreen*, P., Geers, M., Pachur, T., Hertwig, R., Lewandowsky, S., & Herzog*$, S. M. (2021). Boosting people’s ability to detect microtargeted advertising. Scientific Reports, 11, 15541. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-94796-z
  • Kurvers, R. H. J. M., Herzog, S. M., Hertwig, R., Krause, J., & Wolf, M. (2021). Pooling decisions decreases variation in response bias and accuracy. iScience, 102740. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.isci.2021.102740
  • Kozyreva*, A., Lorenz-Spreen, P., Hertwig, R., Lewandowsky, S., & Herzog*$, S. M. (2021). Public attitudes towards algorithmic personalization and use of personal data online: Evidence from Germany, Great Britain, and the US. Humanities & Social Sciences Communications, 8(117). https://doi.org/10.1057/s41599-021-00787-w
  • Analytis, P. P., Barkoczi, D., Lorenz-Spreen, P., & Herzog$, S. M. (2020). The structure of social influence in recommender networks. In WWW '20: Proceedings of the 2020 International World Wide Web Conference. Taipei, Taiwan - April 20-24, 2020. https://doi.org/10.1145/3366423.3380020

Ten selected all-time, peer-reviewed publications

* shared authorships / equal contribution  |  $ senior authorship

  • Litvinova*, A., Kurvers, R. H. J. M., Hertwig, R., & Herzog*$, S. M. (2022). How experts' own inconsistency relates to their confidence and between-expert disagreement. Scientific Reports, 12, 9273. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-022-12847-5
  • Kozyreva*, A., Lorenz-Spreen, P., Hertwig, R., Lewandowsky, S., & Herzog*$, S. M. (2021). Public attitudes towards algorithmic personalization and use of personal data online: Evidence from Germany, Great Britain, and the US. Humanities & Social Sciences Communications, 8. https://doi.org/10.1057/s41599-021-00787-w
  • Lorenz-Spreen*, P., Geers, M., Pachur, T., Hertwig, R., Lewandowsky, S., & Herzog*$, S. M. (2021). Boosting people’s ability to detect microtargeted advertising. Scientific Reports, 11, 15541. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-94796-z
  • Kurvers, R. H. J. M., Herzog, S. M., Hertwig, R., Krause, J., Moussaid, M., Argenziano, G., … Wolf, M. (2019). How to detect high-performing individuals and groups: Decision similarity predicts accuracy. Science Advances, 5, eaaw9011. https://doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.aaw9011
  • Analytis*, P. P., Barkoczi*, D., & Herzog*$, S. M. (2018). Social learning strategies for matters of taste. Nature Human Behavior, 2, 415–424. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41562-018-0343-2
  • Herzog, S. M., & von Helversen, B. (2018). Strategy selection versus strategy blending: A predictive perspective on single- and multi-strategy accounts in multiple-cue estimation. Journal of Behavioral Decision Making, 31, 233–249. https://doi.org/10.1002/bdm.1958
  • Moussaïd, M., Herzog, S. M., Kämmer, J. E., & Hertwig, R. (2017). Reach and speed of judgment propagation in the laboratory. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 114(16), 4117–4122. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1611998114
  • Kurvers, R. H. J. M., Herzog, S. M., Hertwig, R., Krause, J., Carney, P. A., Bogart, A., et al. (2016). Boosting medical diagnostics by pooling independent judgments. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 113, 8777–8782. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1601827113
  • Herzog, S. M., & Hertwig, R. (2014). Harnessing the wisdom of the inner crowd. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 18, 504–506. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tics.2014.06.009
  • Herzog, S. M., & Hertwig, R. (2009). The wisdom of many in one mind: Improving individual judgments with dialectical bootstrapping. Psychological Science, 20, 231–237. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-9280.2009.02271.x
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