Elle Pattenden

Elle Pattenden
Elle Pattenden, 2021 MCDS Doctoral Academy Fellow

An examination of the motivations underlying, and consequences of, social network dynamics for the resolution of environmental collective action problems, using "gamified" experiments and simulations (agent-based models)

A/Prof Simon Cropper, Prof Michael Kirley, Prof Garry Robbins
(and Dr Johan Koskinen, in spirit)

School / Faculty:
Complex Human Data Hub, Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences 
Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences

PhD Details

I am interested in understanding what makes people more (or less 😈) likely to make decisions that benefit others and the environment using a systems perspective. This means that I study people in their social-ecological context to try and understand how different factors – including patterns of social interactions or “networks” – shape behaviour.

Because the real world is complicated and it’s difficult (and unethical) to intervene, I use games and simulations to answer these questions. This means that I get to make “the rules” and see how it changes what people do.

Q & A

Why did you decide to do a PhD?
Big question...I will come back to this.

What do you enjoy reading?
I am currently midway through two books - Geoffrey West's 'Scale: The Universal Laws of Life and Death in Organisms, Cities and Companies' and 'The Uncommon Knowledge of Elinor Ostrom' by Erik Nordman - that I intersperse with a fat stack of papers (that I promised my supervisors I'd stop reading 👀)

What do you enjoy doing when you're not working on your PhD?
So much of my time is spent in front of a computer but I love being outside. I like watching things - birds, birds underwater (have you ever seen a cormorant swim?), and fish are my favourites, but I'll watch anything really. I got really into composting during Melbourne's series of lockdowns and spend quite a bit of time tending to (okay, taming) our little gardenr

Name one fun fact about you.
I am a dreamer. Shout out to all the dreamers!

Work and Publications

Coming soon.