Priv.-Doz. Dr. Friederike Range

(c) Alexandru Munteanu

Curriculum vitae

Friederike Range studied Biology at the University of Bayreuth, Germany (1992-1998), with focus on animal behavior (ethology, physiology, behavioral ecology). She started her research career as a volunteer in research projects in Costa Rica and in the National Park Berchtesgaden. For her Master's thesis, she conducted field research on sooty mangabeys (a terrestrial monkey species) in West Africa, investigating the social system of the adult females. After her graduation, she worked at the Max-Planck Institute  for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig, for six months, before continuing her studies at the University of Pennsylvania, USA. During her PhD, she spent 14 months in the Ivory Coast, investigating social interactions among female and juvenile sooty mangabeys.

After gaining her PhD in 2004, Range returned to Europe, first working on ravens' individual learning abilities at the Konrad Lorenz Institute in Grünau, before accepting her first Postdoc position in Vienna. Within this postdoc project, she examined social learning in marmosets and dogs. In 2007, she founded the Clever Dog Lab [Link 1] together with Ludwig Huber and Zsófia Virányi. In 2008 she established the Wolf Science Center [Link 2] together with Zsófia Virányi and Kurt Kotrschal. After the first Postdoc project, she successfully applied for an FWF project, allowing her to study cognition and development of canine cooperation. She has been working as a university assistant and scientific leader of the Clever Dog Lab at the Messerli Research Institute from September 2011.

2013 Friederike Range habilitated successfully at the University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna. Title: Social monitoring in domestic dogs.

Download CV [Link 3]

Main fields of research

  • Development, emotional context and cognitive tools of Canine Cooperation
  • Physical understanding and problem solving abilities 
  • Causal Reasoning
  • Social cognition and behavior
  • The effect of domestication
  • Personality


  • Elected to be a member of the ‘Junge Kurie’ of the Austrian Academy of Sciences in 2013.
  • Distinguished Scientific Award for Early Career Contribution to Psychology in the area of animal learning and behavior, comparative 2012 of the American Psychological Association (APA)
  • Research award of the City of Vienna 2010
  • Young Investigator Award 2010 of the University of Vienna
  • Nominated as a ‘Rising star 2009’ by the Association for Psychological Science (APS)
  • Focus of Excellence 2008 of the University of Vienna


  • 2004: Full scholarship (Tuition and Stipend) from the Department of Psychology, University of Pennsylvania
  • 2000-2003: Full scholarship (Tuition) from the Department of Psychology
  • 2000-2003: Doktorandenstipendium HSP III vom Deutschen Akademischen Austauschdienst

Consulting Editor

  • Animal Behaviour (2009)

Ad hoc reviewer

  • Animal Behavior
  • Behaviour
  • Acta Ethologica
  • Journal of Comparative Psychology
  • Plos one
  • Behavioural Processes
  • Animal Cognition
  • Science
  • Current Biology

Research projects

  • 2016-2019: The effect of human socialisation on problem solving abilities of canines: are dogs socially more dependent than wolves?. Funded by the DOC-Scholarship ÖAD. Supervision of the thesis of Martina Lazzaroni.
  • 2016-2018: A new look at domestication: the role of oxytocin in wolves’ and dogs’ social relationships with conspecific and human partners. Funded by WWTF.
  • 2013-2018: Understanding the proximate mechanisms of canine cooperation. ERC Starting grant funded by the EU.2013-2017: Proximate Mechanisms of Canine Cooperation: Prosocial attitudes and inequity aversion. Funded by FWF.
  • 2013-2017: Proximate Mechanisms of Canine Cooperation: Prosocial attitudes and inequity aversion. Funded by FWF.
  • 2012-2015: The semantics of talking with the eyes and gestures: the hormonal and cognitive underpinnings of comprehending cooperative communication in domestic dogs and wolves. WWTF Cognitive Science grant 2011.
  • 2010-2012: The effect of early experience on physical cognition in dogs. Funded by the Austrian Science Fund (FWF).
  • 2010-2017: Cognitive Development and Aging in pet dogs. Funded by the industry.
  • 2009-2011: Cognitive tools and emotional context in canine cooperation. Funded by FWF.


complete publication list [Link 4]


Priv.-Doz. Friederike Range PhD.
T +43 1 25077-2685
E-Mail to Friederike Range  [Link 5]