Main fields of interest:
Social Behaviour, Complex Cognition, Evolution of Mind
Thomas Bugnyar received his PhD in Biological Sciences from University of Vienna in 2001. He worked as an Erwin Schrödinger fellow at the University of Vermont, USA, and as lecturer at the School of Psychology, University of St Andrews, UK. In 2008 he settled in Austria with the help of the prestigious START prize. Since 2013 he is full Professor of Cognitive Ethology at the University of Vienna. Bugnyar is interested in social behaviour and the evolution of complex cognition. He pursues an integrative approach, combining concepts and methods of behavioural biology and comparative psychology. His is most renowned for his long-term program on ravens studied under captive and field conditions but currently expands his work to other 'smart' animals such as primates and parrots. The broad questions are (i) which abilities do individuals require to solve problems in daily life with others, (ii) what types of mental representation underlie these abilities and (iii) how are skills acquired and transmitted.