Dr Leonardo Cohen


I am an experimental psychologist, and I obtained my PhD from UCL investigating decisions from descriptions and experience.

My research focuses on decisions under uncertainty, in particular investigating how individuals combine risk and probability information from different sources when making decisions. I am interested in how descriptive and experiential information are combined and integrated when individuals make decisions. I have recently been awarded a small research grant by the British Academy/Leverhulme to explore decisions made using a combination of descriptive and experiential information.

I also research how to create more efficient warnings and disclaimers which can help individuals make better decisions.

Recent research projects the evaluation of safer gambling message employed in the UK, the development of better disclaimers to help individuals make better financial and investment decisions, and how disclaimers can influence the attribution of blame when using smart products (in collaboration with the UK Government's Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy).

Before entering academia, I worked as a management and strategy consultant for corporate and investment banks.

Academic responsibilities

Lecturer in Cognitive Psychology


  • Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Leeds University Business School, 2019-2021
  • Postdoctoral Research Associate, City University of London, 2018-2019
  • PhD in Experimental Psychology, UCL, 2017
  • MSc Cognitive and Decision Sciences, UCL, 2012
  • MSc Finance and Economics, LSE, 2000
  • BSc Economics, PUC-RJ, Brazil, 1998

Teaching and learning

I am module leader for PS7002 - Research Design and Analysis - which is provides an advanced coverage of the design and analysis of psychological research. In addition to statistical methods, my research-based teaching revolves around cognitive psychology (learning and memory) with a special focus on theory and applications of decision-making.

I also teach on the following modules:

  • PS4002: Foundations of Psychology
  • PS5003: Brain, Behaviour, and Cognition
  • PS6008: Advanced Issues in the Psychology of Thinking
  • PS7002: Research Design and Analysis
  • PS7020: Applications of Behavioural Decision Science
  • PS7021: The Psychology of Thinking, Judgement, and Decision-Making

Feel free to contact me if you have any questions about any of these topics.


Areas of specialism

  • Decision-making
  • Risk and probabilities
  • Warning labels and disclaimers
  • Financial decision-making


Jump to: Article
Number of items: 16.


Newall, Philip W. S., Hayes, Ty, Singmann, Henrik, Weiss-Cohen, Leonardo, Ludvig, Elliot A. and Walasek, Lukasz (2023) Evaluation of the "take time to think" safer gambling message : a randomised, online experimental study. Behavioural Public Policy, ISSN (print) 2398-063X (Epub Ahead of Print)

Murray, Jennifer, Dhamib, Mandeep K., McClatchey, Kirstie, Weiss-Cohen, Leonardo and Ayton, Peter (2023) Health, wellbeing, and social interaction : an international and demographic analysis of perceived life changes and the positives and negatives of the COVID-19 lockdown. Europe's Journal of Psychology, 19(2), pp. 143-157. ISSN (online) 1841-0413

Newall, Philip W. S., Weiss-Cohen, Leonardo, Thoma, Volker and Ayton, Peter (2022) Differences amongst estimates of the UK problem gambling prevalence rate are partly due to a methodological artefact. International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction, ISSN (print) 1557-1874 (Epub Ahead of Print)

Weiss-Cohen, L., Newall, P. W. S. and Ayton, Peter (2022) Persistence is futile : chasing of past performance in repeated investment choices. Journal of Experimental Psychology : Applied, 28(2), pp. 341-359. ISSN (print) 1076-898X

Newall, Philip W. S. and Weiss-Cohen, Leonardo (2022) The gamblification of investing : how a new generation of investors is being born to lose. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 19(9), p. 5391. ISSN (online) 1660-4601

Newall, Philip W. S., Weiss-Cohen, Leonardo, Singmann, Henrik, Walasek, Lukasz and Ludvig, Elliot A. (2022) Impact of the "when the fun stops, stop" safer gambling message on online gambling behaviour : a randomised online experimental study. The Lancet Public Health, 7(5), e437-e446. ISSN (online) 2468-2667

Newall, Philip W.S., Weiss-Cohen, Leonardo, Singmann, Henrik, Boyce, W. Paul, Walasek, Lukasz and Rockloff, Matthew J. (2022) A speed-of-play limit reduces gambling expenditure in an online roulette game : results of an online experiment. Addictive Behaviors, 127, p. 107229. ISSN (print) 0306-4603

Ayton, Peter, Weiss-Cohen, Leonardo and Barson, Matthew (2022) Magical contagion and commemorative plaques : effects of celebrity occupancy on property values. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 79, p. 101723. ISSN (print) 0272-4944

Weiss-Cohen, Leonardo, Ayton, Peter, Clacher, Iain and Thoma, Volker (2022) Pension scheme trustees as surrogate decision makers. Finance Research Letters, 44, p. 102043. ISSN (print) 1544-6123

Silas, Jonathan, Jones, Alexander, Weiss-Cohen, Leonardo and Ayton, Peter (2021) The seductive allure of technical language and its effect on covid-19 vaccine beliefs and intentions. Vaccine, 39(52), pp. 7590-7597. ISSN (print) 0264-410X

Weiss‐Cohen, Leonardo, Konstantinidis, Emmanouil and Harvey, Nigel (2021) Timing of descriptions shapes experience‐based risky choice. Journal of Behavioral Decision Making, 34(1), pp. 66-84. ISSN (print) 0894-3257

Ayton, Peter and Weiss-Cohen, Leonardo (2021) Smoking versus vaping : how (not) to communicate their relative harms. Journal of Risk Research, 24(2), pp. 198-214. ISSN (print) 1366-9877

Weiss-Cohen, Leonardo, Ayton, Peter and Clacher, Iain [Auditor] (2020) Extraneous menu-effects influence financial decisions made by pension trustees. Economics Letters, 187, p. 108895. ISSN (print) 0165-1765

Weiss-Cohen, Leonardo, Ayton, Peter, Clacher, Iain and Thoma, Volker (2019) Behavioral biases in pension fund trustees' decision making. Review of Behavioral Finance, 11(2), pp. 128-143. ISSN (print) 1940-5979

Weiss-Cohen, Leonardo, Konstantinidis, Emmanouil, Speekenbrink, Maarten and Harvey, Nigel (2018) Task complexity moderates the influence of descriptions in decisions from experience. Cognition, 170, pp. 209-227. ISSN (print) 0010-0277

Weiss-Cohen, Leonardo, Konstantinidis, Emmanouil, Speekenbrink, Maarten and Harvey, Nigel (2016) Incorporating conflicting descriptions into decisions from experience. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 135, pp. 55-69. ISSN (print) 0749-5978

This list was generated on Tue Feb 20 06:54:51 2024 GMT.