Barbara Mellers

Barbara Mellers
  • I. George Heyman University Professor
  • Professor of Marketing
  • Professor of Psychology

Contact Information

  • office Address:

    765 Jon M. Huntsman Hall
    3730 Walnut Street
    University of Pennsylvania
    Philadelphia, PA 19104-6304

Links: CV


In January 2011, Barbara Mellers was appointed as the 11th Penn Integrates Knowledge Professor. Mellers, a globally influential scholar of decision making, is the I. George Heyman University Professor. This appointment is shared between the Department of Psychology in the School of Arts and Sciences and the Department of Marketing in The Wharton School.

Mellers’ research examines the factors that influence judgments and decisions, including emotions, self-interest, past mistakes, sensitivities to risk and perceptions of fairness. She is an author of almost 100 articles and book chapters, co-editor of two books and a member of numerous prestigious editorial boards. She served as president of the Judgment and Decision Making Society, was a five-year National Science Foundation Presidential Young Investigator and has received major research support from the NSF.

She earned a Ph.D. in 1981 and an M.A. in 1978 in psychology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a B.A. in 1974, also in psychology from Berkeley.

Continue Reading


  • Evan Weingarten, Sudeep Bhatia, Barbara Mellers (Under Review), Multiple Goals as Reference Points.

  • Barbara Mellers, Eric Stone, Terry Murray, Angela Minster, Nick Rohrbaugh, Michael Bishop, Eva Chen, Joshua Baker, Yuan Hou, Michael Horowitz, Lyle Ungar, Philip Tetlock (2015), Identifying and Cultivating Superforecasters as a Method of Improving Probabilistic Predictions, Perspectives on Psychological Science.

  • Mandeep Dhami, David Mandel, Barbara Mellers, Philip Tetlock (2015), Improving Intelligence Analysis with Decision Science, Perspectives on Psychological Science.

  • Edgar Merkle, Mark Steyvers, Barbara Mellers, Philip Tetlock (2015), Item Response Models of Probability Judgments: Application to a Geopolitical Forecasting Tournament, decision.

  • Barbara Mellers, Eric Stone, Pavel Atanasov, Nick Rohrbaugh, S. E. Metz, Lyle Ungar, Michael Bishop, Michael Horowitz (2015), The Psychology of Intelligence Analysis: Drivers of Prediction Accuracy in World Politics, Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied.

  • Jonathan Baron, Barbara Mellers, Philip Tetlock, Eric Stone, Lyle Ungar (2015), Two Reasons to Make Aggregated Probability Forecasts More Extreme, Decision Analysis.

  • Ville Satopää, Shane T. Jensen, Barbara Mellers, Philip Tetlock, Lyle H. Ungar (2014), Probability Aggregation in Time-Series: Dynamic Hierarchical Modeling of Sparse Expert Beliefs, The Annals of Statistics, 8 (2), pp. 1256-1280.

  • Barbara Mellers, Philip Tetlock, Nick Rohrbaugh, Eva Chen (2014), Forecasting Tournaments: Tools for Increasing Transparency and Improving the Quality of Debate, Current Directions in Psychological Science.

  • Philip Tetlock and Barbara Mellers (2014), Judging political judgment, PNAS.

  • Barbara Mellers, Lyle Ungar, Jonathan Baron, Jaime Ramos, Burcu Gurcay, Katrina Fincher, Sydney Scott, Don Moore, Pavel Atanasov, Samuel Swift, Terry Murray, Eric Stone, Philip Tetlock (2014), Psychological Strategies for Winning a Geopolitical Forecasting Tournament, Psychological Science.


PSYC 253 Judgments and Decisions

PSYC 600 Proseminar in Judgments and Decisions

MDS 521 Judgments and Decisions

MKTG 211 Consumer Behavior

MKTG 960 Seminar in Consumer Behavior

Current Courses

  • MKTG211 - Consumer Behavior

    This course is concerned with how and why people behave as consumers. Its goals are to: (1) provide conceptual understanding of consumer behavior, (2) provide experience in the application of buyer behavior concepts to marketing management decisions and social policy decision-making; and (3) to develop analytical capability in using behavioral research.

    MKTG211002 ( Syllabus )

  • MKTG951 - Judmnt & Dec Making Cb B

    The purpose of this course is to build off MKTG 950, "Judgment and Decision Making Perspectives on Consumer Behavior - Part A" with a more specialized focus that will vary from year to year. This course is intended for those interested in deepening their study of Judgment and Decision Making beyond the basics.


  • PSYC453 - Seminar Decision Making

    This seminar will be a series of engaging discussions on a variety of topics that are important to the field of behavioral decision theory. We'll cover issues such as constructed preferences, loss aversion, nudging, emotions, well-being, other-oriented decisions, intuitive predictions, unethical choices,and more. Students will be asked to present papers and generate ideas for potential research projects each week. Grades will be based on class contributions and a paper that is either a literature review or a careful and detailed proposal for a research project.


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Latest Research

Evan Weingarten, Sudeep Bhatia, Barbara Mellers (Under Review), Multiple Goals as Reference Points.
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In the News

Why Self-awareness Is the Key to More Effective Team Discussions

New Wharton research shows that when people are trying to solve problems, the most effective team discussions happen when participants know what they know – and what they don’t.

Knowledge @ Wharton - 2020/01/2
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