Prof. Ale Smidts

Ale Smidts

Professor of Marketing Research
Rotterdam School of Management (RSM)
Erasmus University Rotterdam

Connected with


Ale Smidts is a professor of marketing research and chair of the Department of Marketing Management, Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM).

Professor Smidts is director of RSM's Erasmus Center for Neuroeconomics. He is the former scientific director of ERIM (2004-2011) and the former dean of RSM Research. He was a board member of the Social Science and Humanities Division (SGW/NWO) of the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) from 2012-2019. Since 2015 he is a member of the Advisory Board of the Neuromarketing Science and Business Association (NMSBA).

Professor Smidts current research focus is decision neuroscience and neuromarketing, including the neural processes underlying consumer decision making and social influence. 

His work on decision neuroscience has appeared in the Journal of Marketing Research, International Journal of Research in Marketing, Psychological Science, the Journal of Economic Psychology, the Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, Marketing Letters and in major journals in the field of neuroscience such as Social Cognitive & Affective Neuroscience, the Journal of Neuroscience, Nature Reviews Neuroscience and Neuron.

His previous work on behavioral decision making, risk attitudes and persuasive communication has appeared in major journals in the field of management such as Management Science, the Academy of Management Journal, Marketing Science, the International Journal of Research in Marketing, Journal of Consumer Psychology and the Journal of Consumer Research.

Professional experience

Full Professor

Erasmus University Rotterdam
RSM - Rotterdam School of Management
Department of Marketing Management


Key Publications (38)

Professional Publications (15)

  • M.A.S. Boksem & A. Smidts (2016). Voorspelt EEG filmsucces? Psychologische processen in het brein. Tijdschrift voor Marketing , 44-47.
  • M.A.A.M. Leenders, A. Smidts & A. El Haji (2016). Using scent to lift customers' moods. RSM Discovery - Management Knowledge, 27 (3), 17-19.
  • R. Morris & A. Smidts (2014). Paving the way in neuroeconomics. RSM Insight, 17 (1), 5-7.
  • A. Smidts, A.Th.H. Pruyn & C.B.M. van Riel (2002). De invloed van interne communicatie en ondervonden externe prestige op bedrijfsidentificatie. Tijdschrift voor Strategische Bedrijfscommunicatie, 8 (1), 8-21.
  • A. Smidts, A.Th.H. Pruyn & C.B.M. van Riel (2002). De invloed van interne communicatie en ondervonden externe prestige op bedrijfsidentificatie. In Handboek Interne Communicatie (pp. 3-27)
  • C.B.M. van Riel, A. Smidts & A.Th.H. Pruyn (2001). Organisatie-identificatie en interne communicatie. In C.B.M. van Riel (Ed.), Corporate Communication - Het managen van reputatie . Alphen aan den Rijn: Adfo
  • A. Smidts (1999). Marktonderzoek. In E. Waarts (Ed.), NIMA Marketing Lexicon: Begrippen en omschrijvingen (pp. 111-169). Groningen: Wolters-Noordhoff
  • G.H. van Bruggen, A. Smidts & B. Wierenga (1994). Effectiviteit van marketing management support systemen. Tijdschrift voor Marketing, 28 (5), 66-69.
  • A. Smidts, L.J. Doorn & J. Post (1993). Marktonderzoek. In N. Lamperjee & E. Waarts (Eds.), NIMA marketing lexicon: begrippen en omschrijvingen (pp. 99-153). Groningen: Wolters-Noordhoff
  • A.Th.H. Pruyn & A. Smidts (1993). Consumentenreacties bij wachtrijen (I): literatuuroverzicht en studiebevindingen. Tijdschrift voor Marketing, 27 (9), 49-53.
  • A.Th.H. Pruyn & A. Smidts (1993). Consumentenreacties bij wachtrijen (II): een theoretisch raamwerk. Tijdschrift voor Marketing, 27 (10), 40-46.
  • A.Th.H. Pruyn, C.B.M. van Riel & A. Smidts (1993). De Rotterdamse Organisatie Identificatie Test (ROIT): een onderzoek naar de communicatie binnen en identificatie met de Sociale Verzekeringsbank. (Extern rapport). Rotterdam: Faculteit der Bedrijfskunde, Department Marketing Management
  • A.Th.H. Pruyn & A. Smidts (1992). De psychologische beleving van wachtrijen. (Intern rapport, Report, no 126). :
  • A.Th.H. Pruyn, C.B.M. van Riel & A. Smidts (1992). ROIT bij AKZO. (Extern rapport, External Report). Rotterdam: Department Marketing Management
  • A.Th.H. Pruyn, C.B.M. van Riel & A. Smidts (1992). ROIT bij Gemeente Rotterdam. (Extern rapport, External Report). Rotterdam: Department Marketing Managememt

Scholarly Publications (79)

Doctoral Thesis


Editorial positions (7)

  • Journal of Neuroscience, Psychology, and Economics

    Consulting Editor

  • Journal of Consumer Research

    Ad Hoc Reviewer

  • Academy of Management Journal

    Ad Hoc Reviewer

  • International Journal of Research in Marketing

  • Journal of Marketing Research

    Ad Hoc Reviewer

  • Journal of Consumer Psychology

    Editorial Board

  • Jaarboek NVMI


Organization Memberships (3)

Side positions (5)

  • MarktOnderzoekAssociatie (MOA)

    Chairman Stichting Toetsingsbureau KCC


    Board member

  • TKI Dinalog

    Board member

  • Neuromarketing Science and Business Association (NMSBA)

    Advisory Board Member

  • Society for Neuroeconomics



Media items

  • Voorspelt EEG filmsucces?

    The research of Maarten Boksem and Ale Smidts regarding neuroimaging technologies, such as EEG machines can reveal information that is not obtainable through conventional marketing surveys. How well could these results predict the...

  • Buyer Brain Romania invitata sa vorbeasca la Forumul Mondial de Neuromarketing in Dubai.

    This week the Global Forum of Neuromarketing will take place in Dubai. Here, specialists in the field worldwide are invited to speak about the impact that new technologies and research will have on consumer behavior and marketing....

  • Neuromarketing: saviour or destroyer?

    Is neuromarketing the tip of a dangerous iceberg or dawn of a new era in communications? Many experts are consulted, including Ale Smidts who states neuromarketing is the “measure of implicit processes (emotional needs and wants)...


    To make (TV) commercials more effective, marketers increasingly call for help from brain scientists. According to Ale Smidts, the dubious reputation of neuromarketing is due to of a good number of 'cowboys' creating unrealistic...

  • Samenstelling nieuwe domeinbesturen NWO vastgesteld

    NWO is changing administration and organization to make it clearer and more consistent. Thus, they will be better equipped to perform its core functions, funding and innovating of scientific research in the Netherlands and the...

  • B&E | Smarten Up! Neuromarketing Is Getting More Intelligent

    For decades, CMOs and others have left no stone unturned in the quest to fathom consumer behavior and take marketing to a new and better level. Yet, as every marketing professional knows, consumers don’t always do what they say,...

  • Neuromarketing is getting more intelligent

    Neuromarketing is not a new concept. Ale Smidts, a professor of marketing research at the Rotterdam School of Management at Erasmus University, coined the term in 2002. Over the years, neuromarketing has grabbed the attention of...

  • Neuromarketing: dit Nederlandse onderzoeksbureau kijkt in de hersenen van de consument

    Besides consulting assignments for clients, Alpha.One conducts independent investigations in the name of science. "We are very transparent as a company and want to share as much progress as possible. Last January we had an article...

  • Brainfirst#3 - Breinreactie Goede Voorspeller Klantgedrag

    We would all like to know what goes on in other people's brains. After all, it would let us know a person's motives and how to respond accordingly. Although it sounds utopian to understand the human psyche, there are tricks that...

  • Mister Brein Breker

    Retailers and marketers know how products get the best top of mind awareness. At least, that's what they think. Because they can not, of course, look into customers' minds. Or can they? Yes, says scientist Roeland Dietvorst. He...

  • Neuromarketing: così le aziende leggono nel pensiero

    Ale Smidts, Professor of Marketing Research at RSM, gives his opinion as to why neuromarketing could explain why a certain product is more successful than others.

  • Zintuigen prikkelen: Hoe neuromarketing helpt bij eventmarketing!

    An article that mentions the term 'neuromarketing', which is directly referenced to Ale Smidts, Professor of Marketing Research at RS.

Discovery items

Tracking emotions real time in the brain

Being able to accurately measure emotional experiences can serve many practical purposes. Firms can see if their product has the intended emotional effect on people.

How does the human brain respond to injustice?

People are very sensitive to injustice. Do we rather punish violators or compensate victims? The hormone oxytocine plays a remarkable role.

Identifying strong brands in the brain

Marketeers no longer only have to rely on what consumers tell them about brand perception. We can now see it in the brain.

Using scent to lift customers’ moods

Strong scents brighten shoppers' attitudes and open wallets. The right scent at the right intensity can increase sales by nearly a third.


Current Topics in Marketing Research

  • Study year: 2018/2019, 2016/2017, 2015/2016
  • Code: BERMASC040
  • ECTS: 5 Level: Master

Neuroeconomics: how the brain decides

  • Study year: 2018/2019, 2014/2015, 2013/2014
  • Code: BKBMIN018
  • ECTS: 15 Level: Bachelor, Bachelor 3, Bachelor 3


  • Study year: 2018/2019, 2017/2018, 2016/2017, 2015/2016
  • Code: BMME057
  • ECTS: 6 Level: Master

Past courses

ERIM Research Clinic Marketing

  • Study year: 2017/2018, 2016/2017, 2015/2016
  • Code: BERMRC003
  • ECTS: 4 Level: Master

Current Topics in Marketing Research

  • Study year: 2014/2015
  • Code: BERMASC037
  • ECTS: 3 Level: Master


  • Study year: 2014/2015, 2013/2014
  • Code: RSMME052
  • ECTS: 6 Level: Master

Topics in Consumer Behavior (3): Advances in Consumer Neuroscience

  • Study year: 2013/2014
  • Code: BERMASC025
  • ECTS: 5 Level: Master