Call for applications: PhD position in cognitive science at Institut Paul Bocuse

The perceptual and cognitive markers of flavored products naturalness:
a cross-cultural perspective

Lyon Neuroscience Research Center (CRNL) – Institut Paul Bocuse Research Center, Ecully – MANE Flavor & Fragrance Manufacturer

Deadline for application: September 16th 2018

Consumers’ expectations are generally well known but poorly understood. However, a proper understanding of consumer’s expectations is needed to reduce the failure rate of new products in the market by providing better pre-launch decision criteria.
Naturalness features among the main expectations of consumers in different fields. 80% of consumers were interested in looking for naturalness in the food sector (TNS, 2012). Natural products represent one of the only sources of growth in the sector of the DPH (Drugstore, Perfumery, and Hygiene) (LSA, Trade & Consumption, article of 14/09/17).
Even if there is a large consensus in the field of consumer research that naturalness features among the main consumers’ expectations, the notion of naturalness is still vague and poorly understood (Roman et al., 2017). Moreover, the sensory and cognitive markers that trigger the naturalness category remain to be identified especially in the aromatic products domain.
The general objective of the present PhD project is to identify the different properties (olfactory, visual and semantic) associated with the category of naturalness, to measure the strength of implicit associations using methodologies from cognitive science, and the robustness of these associations across distinct cultural areas. The results obtained will highlight the perceptual and cognitive markers of perceived naturalness, and will be exploited by marketing and R&D departments to better interpret and meet the expectations of consumers regarding naturalness.



Thesis co-supervisors:

  • Dr. Moustafa Bensafi, Research Director at Lyon Neuroscience Research Center (CRNL, Lyon)
  • Dr. Jérémie Lafraire, Research Group Leader in Cognitive Science (IPBR), research associate at Institut Jean Nicod (CNRS-EHESS-ENS, Paris, Ulm)

Scientific contact point at MANE: Hélène ALLAIN, Head of the sensory analysis department at Mane (Bar Sur Loup)

The PhD student will be mainly based at IPBR (Lyon).
Regular stay at CRNL and Mane (Bar-sur-Loup, 06)
Potential field work abroad

Further information

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