Jens interested in how belief and behaviour impact democratic stability, information fragility, discrimination, and environmental sustainability. Specifically, he researches how people update their beliefs about the world when they see new information and how they use their understanding of the world to guide their behaviour. In addition, he uses computational modelling techniques to understand how people may respond to political, economic, or information interventions. For example, how can we ensure democratic stability and have high-quality information systems while protecting freedom of speech?
To explore these questions, he uses a mixture of qualitative and quantitative methods (e.g. interviews, Bayesian modelling, and agent-based modelling), experimental designs, and formal models to gauge how people adapt when their environment and social context changes (to explore how legislative, social, or systemic changes impact people’s beliefs and behaviour).
His work includes topics like environmental sustainability (e.g. fisheries and poaching) and how information systems work (e.g. echo chamber formation and the impact of credibility). He leads the ‘Decision-making In Complex Environments’ (DICE) group and teaches modules on cognitive psychology (PB201), research apprenticeships (PB312), social and public communication (PB404), and more.
- Perceptions of source independence and polarization: integrating computational modelling, cross cultural analysis, and experimental psychology to understand and counter polarization’ (Co-PI w. Lee de Wit, University of Cambridge), Templeton World Charity Foundation
- Testing and parameterising an ABM Information Ecosystem model’ and ‘Constructing a formal model for assessing the efficiency of micro-targeting’, RIIF Fund
- ‘Development and validation of a representative face stimulus database’, LSE RISF grant