Rui Mata was born in Lisbon, Portugal, in 1979. He started his studies in Psychology in 1997 and received his Licenciatura from the University of Lisbon in 2002. Rui moved to Germany in 2002 and became a predoctoral fellow of the Max Planck Research School LIFE, working at the Center for Adaptive Behavior and Cognition at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development, Berlin. He received his doctoral degree from the Free University Berlin in 2006. Between 2006 and 2014, he was a postdoctoral researcher at different institutions in Portugal (University of Lisbon), USA (University of Michigan, Stanford University), and Switzerland (University of Basel).
In 2014, he became a Professor for Cognitive and Decision Sciences at the University of Basel. He is currently also an Adjunct Researcher with the Center for Adaptive Rationality, Max Planck Institute for Human Development, Germany.
He is a faculty member of the Social, Economic, and Decision Psychology PhD program and of the Bernoulli Network for the Behavioral Sciences at the University of Basel, and functions as a member of the Committee for Risk Research and Risk Perception of the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment.
Rui is married and has two daughters. He doesn’t particularly enjoy writing about himself in the 3rd person but has learned to appreciate the meta-level insights such an exercise provides.