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Dr David Ellis

Formerly at Lancaster University


David is a 50th Anniversary Lecturer in the Department of Psychology. He also holds a visting fellowship at The University of Lincoln.

He obtained a degree in psychology at The University of Glasgow, followed by an MSc and PhD. Both his Masters and PhD were funded by the Economic and Social Research Council. He was previously a research fellow at Lancaster University (2012-2013) and a lecturer in the School of Psychology at The University of Lincoln (2013-2015).

In addition to university led research, he has also completed internships in the public and private sectors, including an ESRC funded placement at The Scottish Government in 2011.


Research Interests

The majority of my research considers how recent methodological developments in technology and data collection (often referred to as digital traces) can reveal information about individuals and their behaviour. This often involves the integration of converging evidence from laboratory based behavioural experiments and large scale secondary data analysis.

More specifically, opportunities afforded by new technology are ideally suited to understanding the complexity of psychological processes as they unfold in everyday contexts. This has led my lab to develop new methods and theory to collect and understand real-world behavioural data (e.g., GPS location and screen time metrics). These are often applied within security and health contexts.

Web Links

External PhD Supervision

Research Grants

Active Grants

PI/ Developing predictive analytics for general practice in the NHS - Awarded £7,500 by ESRC IAA in 2019

PI/ Digital Dependency in online settings - Awarded £47,118 by CPNI in 2018

Co-I/ Centre for Research and Evidence on Security Threats: Phase II 2018-2020 - Awarded £2.88M by ESRC in 2018

Co-I/ Pledging a meet-free month: An experience sampling study with smartphones - Awarded $41,181 by Animal Charity Evaluators in 2017

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