Dr Gulbanu Kaptan

Dr Gulbanu Kaptan


After some years in applied work as a food engineer, I resumed my studies, acquiring an M.B.A. and Ph.D. in Business Administration with a focus on decision, risk, and operations management. My Ph.D. thesis includes a theoretical analysis in Turkey and Israel that links risk beliefs and attitudes to social factors. I conducted the study as an exchange Ph.D. student in the Psychology Department of Tel Aviv University (Israel). This work was supported by research grants from Bilkent University Business School (Turkey) and Moshe Dayan Center at Tel Aviv University. The paper in relation to my Ph.D. research was published in ABS4 journal Risk Analysis, and the poster I presented at the Affect, Motivation and Decision Making International Conference (Israel, 2006) received the Best Poster Award.

After completing my Ph.D., I was awarded an EU-FP7 Marie Curie International Outgoing Fellowship for Career Development.  I completed the first two years in the Department of Social and Decision Sciences at Carnegie Mellon University (USA), and the last year at the Centre for Rural Economy at Newcastle University.

I joined Leeds University Business School in 2014 as a Lecturer in Behavioural Decision Making, and was promoted to Associate Professor in 2018. I worked as the Interim Head of the Decision Research Group between February-August 2020.

My research interests focus on judgement and decision making with special interest in food-related decision making, developing risk (benefit) communications, and interventions related to food consumption and waste. I have been involved in a number of UK and internationally-funded research projects to date (listed below):

--Co-Investigator for the project on Healthy soils, Healthy food, Healthy people (H3). (2021-2026). UKRI Strategic Priorities Fund https://business.leeds.ac.uk/dir-record/research-projects/1883/h3-healthy-soil-healthy-food-healthy-people

--Principle Investigator for the project on Capitalising on COVID-19 as a Trigger for Positive Change in Food Waste Behaviour (2020-2022). UKRI/ESRC Grant https://bit.ly/foodwastebehaviour

--Principle Investigator for the project on Subconscious and affective determinants of food waste behaviour, (2020). Leeds University Business School Challenge Fund. – This project is being presented as the case study for future LUBS Challange Fund Applications. See  Challenge Fund SharePoint page

--Collaborator for the multi-country project on Why people eat in a traditional or modern way, (2017-2020). German Research Foundation.

--Co-Investigator and Co-director for the ESRC Research Seminar Series on Integrating perspectives on consumer perceptions of food safety, nutrition and waste (2014-2017). ESRC Grant. https://business.leeds.ac.uk/research-cdr/dir-record/research-projects/1608/seminar-series-on-food-options-opinions-and-decisions-food-integrating-perspectives-on-consumer-perceptions-of-food-safety-nutrition-and-waste

--Principle Investigator for the project on Eliciting expert opinion on consumers’ understanding of the interactions between nutrition, food safety, and waste (2015). Leeds University Business School Research Centre Grant.

--Marie Curie International Outgoing Fellow for the project on Contamination of food with biological agents: An integrated risk analysis and risk communication approach (2009-2012). EU-FP7 Grant.



Research interests

  • Food-related decision making (e.g., food waste, novel food technologies, healthy eating, food safety)
  • Developing risk (benefit) communications, and interventions related to food consumption and waste
  • Eating behaviour
  • Social value foundations of risk (i.e., relationship between social factors and risk beliefs & attitudes)

*I welcome contact from prospective PhD candidates interested in any of the above research topics.


  • PhD Business Administration, Faculty of Business Administration, Bilkent University (Turkey)
  • MBA, Baskent University (Turkey)
  • MSc and BSc Food Engineering, Middle East Technical University (Turkey)

Professional memberships

  • Editorial board member in the Journal of Risk Analysis and Crisis Communication
  • Member of the Society for Risk Analysis
  • Member of the Global Food and Environment Institute - University of Leeds
  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy

Student education

I am the Winner of LUBS 2017-18 Partnership awards in the category of Best Feedback - the person who provides invaluable and supportive academic feedback, in both content and delivery method, which helps others to develop and excel in their work.

Undergraduate Teaching (current):
LUBS2765 Advanced Management Decision Making (Module Leader) 
Postgraduate Teaching (current): 
LUBS5253 Advanced Management Decision Making (Module Leader) 

Postgraduate and Undergraduate Teaching (previous):

LUBS55582 Research Methods (Module Leader) 2015-2017

LUBS5202 Risk Perception and Communication (Team member) 2015-2019

LUBS1785 Introduction to Effective Decision Making (Module Leader) 2014-2019

LUBS3885 Management Decision Making (Lecturer and Tutor in Semester 1) 2014-2018





Research groups and institutes

  • Centre for Decision Research