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Project title: "Biased communication: the cognitive pragmatics of fallacies"

Author Davis OZOLS
Director of thesis Director of thesis: Didier Maillat (University of Fribourg)
Co-director of thesis Co-Director of thesis: Louis de Saussure (University of Neuchâtel)
Summary of thesis

The research project "Biased communication: the cognitive pragmatics of fallacies" is a collaboration between the universities of Fribourg and Neuchatel and pertains to the study of heuristical means of reasoning and cognitive biases in everyday argumentation. More specifically, it looks at how persuasive and manipulative discourse exploits cognitive biases, which hinder the interpretative process and yield sub-optimal, or even irrational, outcomes. The aim of the project is to provide an explanatory approach to persuasion and manipulation by combining insights from both linguistics and cognitive psychology.


PhD thesis will be carried out in the scope of this project and will empirically investigate a specific cognitive phenomenon (such as repetition, emotional triggers or use of authority) that can be exploited in manipulation and persuasion.

Administrative delay for the defence