Decisions, emotion and experience

My research deals with one of the most fundamental questions in psychology - how emotions are elicited and how they affect us in our everyday lives. This is studied in four different main themes.

Prosocial helping/the decision to donate

There is a vast need for voluntary donations for both local and global causes. But what motivates us to help? We conduct research to examine the role of deliberate, emotional and moral drivers for helping behaviors.

Homo Heuristicus - how decisions are actually made

Decision making has been seen as a “rational” process where decision makers maximize utility. However, in most situations we make decision using simplified heuristics. We study when and why relying on emotional and habitual decision strategies may be beneficial in many situations.

Neuroeconomics - studies of how the brain and body make decisions

During the past 20 years, neuroeconomics has been established as an important research area. We study how people make decision with the help of brain imaging techniques.

Emotion, Music and Sound

What is it in a sound or a musical piece that can move us so deeply? We use experimental methods to study how music affect us in our everyday lives.



Michael ODonnell, Leif D. Nelson, Evi Ackermann, Balazs Aczel, Athfah Akhtar, Silvio Aldrovandi, Nasseem Alshaif, Ronald Andringa, Mark Aveyard, Peter Babincak, Nursena Balatekin, Scott A. Baldwin, Gabriel Banik, Ernest Baskin, Raoul Bell, Olga Bialobrzeska, Angie R. Birt, Walter R. Boot, Scott R. Braithwaite, Jessie C. Briggs, Axel Buchner, Desiree Budd, Kathryn Budzik, Lottie Bullens, Richard L. Bulley, Peter R. Cannon, Katarzyna Cantarero, Joseph Cesario, Stephanie Chambers, Christopher R. Chartier, Peggy Chekroun, Clara Chong, Axel Cleeremans, Sean P. Coary, Jacob Coulthard, Florien M. Cramwinckel, Thomas F. Denson, Marcos Diaz-Lago, Theresa E. DiDonato, Aaron Drummond, Julia Eberlen, Titus Ebersbach, John E. Edlund, Katherine M. Finnigan, Justin Fisher, Natalia Frankowska, Efrain Garcia-Sanchez, Frank D. Golom, Andrew J. Graves, Kevin Greenberg, Mando Hanioti, Heather A. Hansen, Jenna A. Harder, Erin R. Harrell, Andree Hartanto, Michael Inzlicht, David J. Johnson, Andrew Karpinski, Victor N. Keller, Olivier Klein, Lina Koppel, Emiel Krahmer, Anthony Lantian, Michael J. Larson, Jean-Baptiste Legal, Richard E. Lucas, Dermot Lynott, Corey M. Magaldino, Karlijn Massar, Matthew T. McBee, Neil McLatchie, Nadhilla Melia, Michael C. Mensink, Laura Mieth, Samantha Moore-Berg, Geraldine Neeser, Ben R. Newell, Marret K. Noordewier, Asil Ali Ozdogru, Myrto Pantazi, Michal Parzuchowski, Kim Peters, Michael C. Philipp, Monique M. H. Pollmann, Panagiotis Rentzelas, Rosa Rodriguez-Bailon, Jan Philipp Roeer, Ivan Ropovik, Nelson A. Roque, Carolina Rueda, Bastiaan T. Rutjens, Katey Sackett, Janos Salamon, Angel Sanchez-Rodriguez, Blair Saunders, Juliette Schaafsma, Michael Schulte-Mecklenbeck, David R. Shanks, Martin F. Sherman, Kenneth M. Steele, Niklas K. Steffens, Jessie Sun, Kyle J. Susa, Barnabas Szaszi, Aba Szollosi, Ricardo M. Tamayo, Gustav Tinghög, Yuk-yue Tong, Carol Tweten, Miguel A. Vadillo, Deisy Valcarcel, Nicolas Van der Linden, Michiel van Elk, Frenk van Harreveld, Daniel Västfjäll, Simine Vazire, Philippe Verduyn, Matt N. Williams, Guillermo B. Willis, Sarah E. Wood, Chunliang Yang, Oulmann Zerhouni, Robert Zheng, Mark Zrubka

Registered Replication Report: Dijksterhuis and van Knippenberg (1998)

In Perspectives on Psychological Science

Article in journal


Lina Koppel, David Andersson, India Morrison, Kinga Posadzy, Daniel Västfjäll, Gustav Tinghög

The effect of acute pain on risky and intertemporal choice

In Experimental Economics

Article in journal

Gustav Tinghög, David Andersson, Daniel Västfjäll

Are Individuals Luck Egalitarians? – An experiment on the influence of brute and option luck on social preferences

In Frontiers in Psychology

Article in journal

Research groups

Related researchers

Selected publications

The Arithmetic of Emotion: Integration of Incidental and Integral Affect in Judgments and Decisions

Authors: Daniel Västfjäll, Slovic Paul, William Burns, Arvid Erlandsson, Lina Koppel, Erkin Asutay, Gustav Tinghög

Publ 2016
Type Article in journal
To publication

Pseudoinefficacy: negative feelings from children who cannot be helped reduce warm glow for children who can be helped

Authors: Daniel Västfjäll, Paul Slovic, Marcus Mayorga

Publ 2015
Type Article in journal
To publication

Compassion Fade: Affect and Charity Are Greatest for a Single Child in Need

Authors: Daniel Västfjäll, Paul Slovic, Marcus Mayorga, Ellen Peters

Publ 2014
Type Article in journal
To publication