PhD student

Simon Columbus

PhD student

Phone: +31657976480
Room: MF-C580

Personal webpage


I studied psychology, economics, and biology at Amsterdam University College (BA Social Sciences, 2013) and methodology and statistics and organisational psychology at the University of Amsterdam (MSc Psychology, 2016), with short stints at Harvard (2011) and McGill (2012). Before that, I worked as a journalist in Berlin. From 2014 to 2016, I was core tutor at PPLE College, University of Amsterdam.

Curriculum Vitae

PhD project

I joined the Amsterdam Cooperation Lab in 2016 to work on a PhD on interdependence and cooperation, under Daniel Balliet. My work will focuses on a) "the games people play" in their daily lives, b) the mechanisms by which people infer outcome interdependence from cues in their social environment, and c) how this subjectively experienced interdependence shapes cooperative behavior.


I use a variety of methods to study situation perception and human cooperation, including economic games, experience sampling, and meta-analysis. Beyond that, my interests lie in applied statistics and philosophy of science. In particular, I am a strong proponent of open science and interested in projects that further replication, pre-registration, and better theorising in the behavioural sciences. In this spirit, I also serve as the Center for Open Science representative for the department.


Google Scholar
Open Science Framework

Recent publications

FH Gerpott, D Balliet, S Columbus, C Molho & RE de Vries (2018) How Do People Think About Interdependence? A Multidimensional Model of Subjective Outcome Interdependence.. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 115 (4), 716-74220
S Columbus, F Gerpott & J Münich (2017) Playing a Different Game: Perceived Interdependence as a Mechanism Underlying Framing Effects on Cooperation in Social Dilemmas. PsyArXiv
CKW De Dreu, J Gross, Z Méder, M Giffin, E Prochazkova, J Krikeb & ... (2016) In-group defense, out-group aggression, and coordination failures in intergroup conflict. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 113 (38), 10524-1052925
Open Science Collaboration (2015) Estimating the reproducibility of psychological science. Science 349 (6251), aac47162958
B Mutsvairo, S Columbus & I Leijendekker (2014) Reconnoitering the role of (citizen) journalism ethics in the emerging networked public sphere. Ecquid Novi: African Journalism Studies 35 (3), 4-225
S Columbus (2013) Leadership in Altruistic Punishment and Reward. Amsterdam University College
S Columbus (2013) Interpreting Economic Games. Advising on Research Methods: Selected topics 2013, 109-26
S Columbus (2013) Leadership in Altruistic Punishment and Reward. VSNU Student Research Conference, 157-160
S Columbus (2013) The Evolution of Altruistic Punishment. AUC Undergraduate Journal of Liberal Arts & Sciences 2, 36-43
B Mutsvairo & S Columbus (2012) Emerging patterns and trends in citizen journalism in Africa: The case of Zimbabwe. Central European Journal of Communications 5 (1), 123-13715
B Mutsvairo, L Klamroth & S Columbus (2012) Rethinking Mass Communication Theories in the Internet Era. N. Ekekwe & N. Islam, Disruptive Technologies, Innovation and Global …
B Mutsvairo, S Columbus & I Leijendekker (2012) African Citizen Journalists' Ethics and the Emerging Networked Public Sphere. International Symposium on Online Journalism, Austin, TX4
S Columbus (2012) Is the Mobile Phone a Disruptive Technology?: A Partial Review of Evidence from Developing Economies. N. Ekekwe & N. Islam, Disruptive Technologies, Innovation and Global …3
S Columbus (2011) France to disconnect first Internet users under three strikes regime. OpenNet Initiative blog2
S Columbus (2010) The New Casualties: Prisons and Persecution. Digital Activism Decoded: The New Mechanics of Change, 165-1804

View full list of publications on Google Scholar