Doctoral Student Position in Behavioral Neuroscience/Neuroeconomics
University of Zurich

Doctoral student position in behavioral neuroscience / neuroeconomics

A doctoral student position is available at the Zurich Center for Neuroeconomics (ZNE) at the
University of Zurich. The successful applicant will work with Prof. Philippe Tobler on the
neural and pharmacological basis of behavioral flexibility and optimal decision making.

The ZNE ( is a research center and home to the Marlene Porsche Graduate
School of Neuroeconomics. The Laboratory for Social and Neural Systems research (SNS Lab) is the
heart of the ZNE. In this interdisciplinary laboratory, researchers explore the biological and neural
mechanisms that underlie decision making. The SNS Lab is in a custom-built section of the MR
Centre at the University Hospital Zurich and equipped with research-dedicated facilities for fMRI,
brain stimulation, behavioral measurements, EEG, and pharmacological manipulations.

The project

Choose a safe bet or go for a risky but potentially more rewarding alternative? In our project, we aim
to elucidate the neural basis of behavioral flexibility and decision optimality in problems like these and
provide a knowledge basis for disorders characterized by changes in decision making. Specifically,
we plan to combine pharmacological interventions with multiple techniques such as functional and
structural magnetic resonance imaging and eye-tracking to investigate a causal relationship between
neurotransmitter systems in the brain, brain activity and behavioral differences in behavioral flexibility
and optimality in financial and foraging decisions.

Your profile

Candidates should hold (or expect to hold by the end of July) a good Master's degree in one of the
following (or similar) domains: Biology, Psychology, Physics, Neuroscience, Computer Science. They
should possess excellent English skills (both written and oral). German is a plus (but not essential).
They should have strong skills in scientific data analysis, good programming skills (demonstrated
experience with MATLAB, R or Python), as well as good organization and communication skills. They
should also feel comfortable interacting with study participants. Preference will be given to applicants
with experience in MRI data analysis (e.g., experience with using SPM or FSL) and/or in designing
and/or conducting behavioral/fMRI experiments.

What we offer

We are offering four years of funding from the Marlene Porsche Graduate School of Neuroeconomics
starting in September 2022; the opportunity to work under the supervision of Prof. Philippe Tobler; an
inclusive, supportive, and stimulating environment to help you develop your unique academic profile;
facilities to run state-of-the-art experiments.

The working language in the laboratory is English and all PhD courses are taught in English (see

Applications should be submitted (in electronic form only; one single PDF file per applicant) to the
Doctoral Program Coordinator ( These must include: CV, letter of motivation,
transcript of MSc grades and MSc diploma if available, GRE score report, TOEFL score report, and
the names and e-mail addresses of at least two referees. Applications are welcome from overseas as
well as Swiss and EU nationals and will be accepted until the position is filled.

If you apply for this position please say you saw it on Psychoneuroxy


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