Membres de l’équipe Evolution et Sociale Cognition




Nicolas Baumard

I am interested in the evolutionary and cognitive basis of social phenomenon. My research mostly focuses on the origins of morality. Inspired by contractualist theories, I have explored the idea that morality is based on fairness and aims at sharing the costs and benefits of social interactions in a mutually advantageous way. With my colleagues, I have developed this idea in evolutionary biology, experimental psychology, cognitive anthropology and moral philosophy. Recently, I have also studied the importance of fairness in explaining moral religions and designing public policies.



Coralie Chevallier

My research focuses on social cognition, which can be broadly defined as the way in which we think about, analyze and plan social situations. The study of social cognition is interdisciplinary in nature and therefore  needs to integrate research in cognitive, evolutionary and social psychology, behavioral economics, and social neuroscience. I focus more specifically on one of the most central features of social cognition, i.e., the need to belong, or “social motivation”, and I have been interested in describing its role in a range of social behaviors in humans and in the psychopathology of a variety of social disorders (including autism, schizophrenia, or psychopathy).


Jean-Baptiste André

I was trained as a theoretician in evolutionary biology, and I’m interested in understanding behavior, in particular human behavior, based on an evolutionary perspective. My work focuses on two major questions: 

(1) Why is human cooperation universally constrained by the logic of fairness? To answer this question, I develop models in collaboration with Nicolas Baumard and Stéphane Debove. We show that, whereas pairwise reciprocity per se is undertermined (what economists call the folk theorem), the evolution of reciprocal cooperation becomes constrained by fairness principles when individuals can freely engage in a diverse range of social interactions, and choose among them. 

(2) Why is reciprocal cooperation so rare among non humans but so frequent in humans? To answer this question, with the help of models, I show that reciprocal cooperation is not a regular form of adaptation that can evolve by natural selection. Rather its evolution, like the evolution of communication, requires the recycling of functions evolved intially for a different purpose. I’m interested in showing how this constraint explains both the rarity of reciprocal cooperation among non-humans, and the form that it takes in humans.


Pierre Jacquet

I am a cognitive neuroscientist interested in explaining social cognition, and in particular conformism, using evolutionary lense. My project in the Evolution and Social Cognition aims at using life-history theory to study how risk-taking explains inter-individual variability in social learning.


Félix Geoffroy

I am interested in understanding the evolutionary origins of human cooperation. Specifically, my aim is to explain why cooperation emerged in humans (and not other animals) and how evolution favored a fairness-based type of cooperation.

Christina Ioannou

I am interested in emotion perception in adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). Specifically, I am working on whether adolescents with ASD are able to decode emotion expressed by another, and if they do, whether they will spontaneously use it as a communicative signal in order to adapt their behaviour.


Lou Safra

I am interested in how life history theory can account for inter-individual differences in behavior. More precisely, I am studying how life history traits can impact decision making in the exploration-exploitation dilemma both in asocial and social contexts.

Hugo Mell

I am interested in identifying underlying causes of variation in cooperative behaviors in humans. In particular, I will try to assess the importance of ecological parameters, such as harshness and unpredictability of the environment, in shaping this behavioral variation. Drawing on life history theory, I will also examine if inter-individual differences in cooperative behaviors can be integrated into more general life strategies which include life-history traits and other social behaviors.


Charlélie Goldschmidt

I’m a M1 Student at the Cogmaster. I am particularly interested in studying human social behaviour through the scientific lens of both cognitive science and evolutionary theory. Especially I’m interested in cultural behaviour and modelisation. I’m also interested by the possibility of linking exobiology with evolutionary theory, especially evolutionary psychology. In my master internship I focus on the study of the changes in religious behaviour and beliefs using life history theory.

Sacha Yesilaltay

I'm interested in the cognitive processes behind our belief acquisition system. More specifically, how ideas are disseminated in a social environment and how we negotiate with our belief system. To understand this, I'm taking an interdisciplinary perspective using social sciences like sociology and natural sciences such as evolutionary biology.

Perline Demange

I'm interested in associating human behavioral ecology and cognitive science to gain new insights into decision making processes and cooperative behaviors. In particular, my master thesis aims at investigating experimentally adaptive explanations of inter-individual variability of cooperation, according to the Life History Theory.


Guillaume Dezecache

I am postdoctoral researcher for the FRONTSEM ERC project (directed by Philippe Schlenker, in collaboration with Emmanuel Chemla and Klaus Zuberbühler) and I work on the semantics of primate alarm calls

Ricardo Horta

I am interested in how psychology can help to better understand and to improve institutions. Particularly, I am studying how advances in decision-making science can inform public policy in general and the institutional design of the judicial system.


Mark Sheskin

Post-doc 2013-2015, now post doc at Yale University

Stéphane Debove

PhD Student 2012-2015

Stéphane Lambert

PhD Student 2013-2016

Lucien Castex

Master Student (M2) 2013-2014.

Raphaël Delage

Master Student (M2) 2014-2015.

Céline Dusautois

Master Student (M2) 2014-2015.

Judith Lenglet

Master Student (M2) 2014-2015.

Helena Miton

Master Student (M2) 2013-2014, now PhD student at the CEU in Budapest

Tristan Tissot

Master Student (M2) 2013-2014, now PhD Student in Montpellier University

Arnaud Poubland

Master Student (M1) 2014-2015

Martin Dockendorf

Master Student (M1) 2015-2016

Mona Joly

Master Student (M1) 2015-2016

Chloé Svatek

Master Student (M1) 2015-2016