World’s leading customer science company makes major investment in education

13 January 2017


  • dunnhumby sponsors four PhD students at University College London and Oxford University
  • Research based on supermarket shopper data has been published in world’s most cited scientific journal
  • Global market-leading firm analyses insights from nearly one billion shoppers for companies such as Tesco, Coca Cola & Macy's

dunnhumby is sponsoring PhD and Masters students at UCL and Oxford University as it continues to invest in the latest scientific thinking and talent. The organisation is building strong ties with award-winning academics in order to advance the insights into customer behaviour and loyalty it provides to prestigious companies including Tesco, Kellogg's & L'OREAL.

Recent UCL post-graduate Dr. Peter Riefer’s Cognitive Psychology PhD was co-funded by dunnhumby with support from its Global Science team, of which he became a full-time employee upon the completion of his studies. An article based on Peter’s research which modelled when customers are likely to try new products or stick with their favourites has been published in the inaugural edition of specialised online journal Nature Human Behaviour. The article is co-authored by UCL Professor Bradley Love and members of dunnhumby’s Global Science team.

dunnhumby’s other academic partnerships include Imperial College London and many of the academics involved are members of the Alan Turing Institute, the London-headquartered national institute for data science.

Rosie Prior, Academic Partnerships Manager at dunnhumby, commented: “Our investment into data science collaborations with world-leading academics has had a positive impact on dunnhumby’s offerings, enabling us and our clients to benefit from new approaches and solutions. We are proud of this article’s publication and the external endorsement of the advanced data science work being undertaken at dunnhumby.”

Dr. Peter Riefer, lead author, commented:As part of my PhD research, I investigated state-of-the-art research theories using the big data of supermarket shoppers available at dunnhumby. dunnhumby embraces innovation and change, which are important drivers in research. They welcomed the expert knowledge of my supervisor and I on the latest theories in psychology that enable a better understanding of customers’ decision-making and I’m pleased to be joining the team now that I’ve completed my PhD.”



About dunnhumby

dunnhumby is the world’s leading customer science company. We analyse data and apply insights from nearly one billion shoppers across the globe to create personalised customer experiences in digital, mobile, and retail environments. Our strategic process, proprietary insights, and multichannel media capabilities build loyalty with customers to drive competitive advantage and sustained growth for clients. dunnhumby employs over 2,000 experts in offices throughout Europe, Asia, Africa, and the Americas and works with a prestigious group of companies including Tesco, Monoprix, Raley’s, Macy's, Coca-Cola, Procter & Gamble, and PepsiCo. For more information, please visit us at