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Mark Dechesne

Mark Dechesne, Associate professor Centre for Regional Knowledge at Leiden University
Mark Dechesne

Dr. Mark Dechesne obtained his doctorate in 2001 for an experimental psychological analysis of the effects of fear of death on social behavior. He combined insights from existentialist philosophy and principles of social cognition and decision making. He was awarded the praemium erasmianum studiorum (2002) for an exceptional dissertation in the social sciences and humanities, and a VENI innovational incentive grant from NWO (2003) to expand his research. His research is primarily focused on developing basic knowledge regarding human judgment, decision making, and beliefs, and the study of various societal questions in which these processes play an important role. The combination of basic principles of decision making and engaged social research, a combination that can be put under the header of decision making in context, can be used for instance to understand the decision of terrorists to use violence to advance their cause. Mark explored this theme while working at the DHS Center of Excellence NC-START (National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism) from 2006 - 2008, and at various NATO Centers of Excellence. His involvement in the Leiden University Interfacultary Dual PhD Centre The Hague since 2011 raised his awareness of the broad applicability of decision making principles for understanding societal and organizational processes. He hopes to contribute to a further development of methods to conduct research on judgment and decision making in these various domains. He has served on the editorial boards of the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, the European Journal of Social Psychology, and Group Processes and Interpersonal Relations.