The brief introduction of myself
I am an Assistant Professor of Social, Economic, and Organizational Psychology at Leiden University and a member of the Leiden Institute for Brain and Cognition (LIBC). My main research interest is economic and social decision-making. Specifically, I focus on cooperation in social dilemmas and people's responses to cooperative and selfish behaviors of others.
WELMER E. MOLENMAKER
Assistant Professor | Leiden University
Welmer E. Molenmaker obtained his research master's degree in psychology at the University of Amsterdam in 2011. From 2011 to 2015, he worked as PhD candidate at Leiden University. His PhD project focused on the (un)willingness to reward cooperation and punish non-cooperation. Currently, he works as Assistant Professor of Social, Economic, and Organizational Psychology at Leiden University and is a member of the Leiden Institute for Brain and Cognition (LIBC).download resume
my professional background
Currently, I am an Assistant Professor of Social, Economic, and Organizational Psychology at Leiden University....
I was a PhD Candidate at the Social, Economic, and Organizational Psychology unit of Leiden University. My supervisors were Prof. Eric van Dijk and Dr. Erik W. de Kwaadsteniet. The topic of my dissertation was the (un)willingness to reward cooperation and punish non-cooperation....
MAIN RESEARCH INTERESTS
The greatest challenge for all societies is to ensure and protect collective welfare. This challenge arises from the fact that the (long-term) interests of the collective do not necessarily coincide with the (short-term) personal interests of the people belonging to that collective. people have to decide whether or not they cooperate by furthering the collective interest at the expense of their self-interest, or free-ride on others' cooperative efforts without contributing themselves. My research is aimed at answering the question of when and why people are willing to cooperate in such social dilemma situations....
One of the most straightforward ways to protect the collective welfare is to use sanctions. Numerous experiments have consistently shown that positive sanctions (rewards) for cooperation and negative sanctions (punishments) for non-cooperation can effectively enhance cooperation. Although this is an important insight, a critical question remains: Are people actually willing to sanction? This question is of critical importance, if only for the obvious reason that someone should first be willing to administer rewards and punishments before they can show their effects. My research is aimed at answering the question of why people are (un)willing to reward cooperation and punish non-cooperation....
Reward and punishment can help to enforce group cooperation. Yet, this requires that humans direct their rewards to cooperators and their punishments to non-cooperators, both indiscriminately and exclusively. Whenever they, for example, punish some non-cooperators more than others or altogether condition punishment on other factors than lack of cooperation, punishment may lose its effectiveness to enforce cooperation. My research is aimed at answering the questions of how people use reward and punishment, and what consequences this may have on their cooperation-enhancing potential....
Browse my recent work
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2333 AK Leiden
+31 (0)71 527 1440
w.e.molenmaker at fsw.leidenuniv.nl