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Social and Affective Processes Research Group

The Social and Affective Processes (SAP) research group is a dynamic group of internationally renowned researchers employing a variety of behavioural, developmental and neuroscientific techniques to investigate social and affective processes. We are:

Professor Anat Bardi

I am interested in values (broad life goals, like independence), and especially their change and their effect on attention and behaviour.


Dr Victoria Bourne

My current research focuses on understanding individual differences in lateralisation for the processing of emotional faces.


Dr Eilidh Cage

My research interests centre around Autism Spectrum Conditions, specifically autistic identity, mental health, reputation management, experiences of autism acceptance, and the phenomenon of “masking” or “camouflaging” in autism.


Dr Marco Cinnirella

My research focuses on the areas of social identity, intergroup relations and social representations. Current projects include empirical investigations of Islamophobic prejudice, identity expression in social networks, and cyber-security behaviours in large multi-national corporations.


Dr Nick Furl

My lab studies social perception and decision making, with an emphasis on face perception and brain imaging analysis techniques.


Dr Emily Glorney

My research focuses on the mental health of offenders in hospitals, prisons and the community, and forensic mental health service delivery.


Dr Alana James

My research interests include social and emotional development, with a focus upon educational settings; peer support and mentoring interventions; bullying and interpersonal aggression; parenting support and interventions; and children’s perceptions of the police.


Dr Gary Lewis

My research broadly addresses issues concerning individual differences in human personality, social perception, and social attitudes.


Professor Carolyn McGettigan

My research concerns the neural and behavioural aspects of human vocal communication.


Dr Ryan McKay

I'm interested in belief formation and how this process can go awry, resulting in distorted beliefs and delusions.


Professor Amina Memon

My research focuses on topics related to Psychology, Criminal Justice, and Eyewitnesses.


Dr Cat Sebastian

My research focuses on the development of emotional processing in both typical and atypical adolescence, using techniques from  developmental psychology and cognitive neuroscience.


Professor Manos Tsakiris

My research focuses on the neurocognitve mechanisms that shape the experience of embodiment and self-identity using a wide range of research methods, from psychometrics and psychophysics to neuroimaging.


Dr Dawn Watling

My research explores how we navigate through our social world, including factors that may influence our behaviour, and the implications of our social behaviour on our relationships. Much of my research focuses on children's social development, but I am also interested in interactions and behaviours of adults.


Professor Hanna Zagefka

I research the psychology of monetary donations, and social identity and acculturation processes in the context of interethnic relations.


 SAP research staff:


Dr Ruben Azevedo

My research centres around the plasticity of the (social) self, with particular attention to phenomenons involving shared representations (e.g. empathy).


Dr Lara Maister

My general research interests lie in the areas of self-awareness, social cognition, and the perceptual and conceptual distinctions between self and other.


Ms Georgia Rankin

I am extremely interested in clinically-relevant psychological research, and hope to go on to complete a Clinical Doctorate.



Ms Teresa Tang

I have a general research interest in developmental cognitive neuroscience and paediatric neuropsychology. Currently I am investigating interoceptive awareness in infants using behavioural and neurophysiological methods.


 SAP PhD students:

Ms Vivien Ainley

My principal research interest is how interoceptive signals contribute to the human sense of self – influencing cognition, emotion, decision-making and other aspects of self-processing.


Ms Jess Barber

My research interests lie in the field of intergroup relations and focus on examining the attitudes of British individuals towards individual freedom in minority groups.


Ms Hannah Connolly

My research centres around individual differences in social perception, and I am currently exploring affective factors associated with emotion recognition ability.


Ms Suzie Dobrontei

My research is aimed at exploring people’s views on surveillance, privacy and to discover what predicts individuals’ concerns about such. I’m also interested in investigating the lay understanding of freedom, citizenship and the manifestation of national identity in cyberspace.


Ms Lilla Hodossy

I am interested in social cognitive neuroscience, specifically how people connect and understand each other, and what are the cognitive and neural mechanism which enable us to do so.


Ms Siugmin Lay

My research interests centre on helping behaviours, intergroup relations, intergroup contact, prejudice and social identity.


Ms Rachael Lickley

My research is on the neural bases of frustration and how that might change with age, and individual differences linking frustration to reactive aggression.


Ms Rachel Nesbit

My research is exploring what factors may influence emotion recognition during adolescence.


Ms Katherine O'Lone

My research seeks to investigate how feelings of guilt interact with intuitive reputation management concerns to motivate confession, and how confession can be an effective and optimal reputation management strategy.


Ms Jessica Rea

I am interested in the impact of inequality on psychological and social processes, particularly whether psychological differences and similarities between groups can be leveraged to promote social equality and cohesion.


Mr Metodi Siromahov

I study the psychology of imagined communities (national and large sub-national social groups that are perceived as natural entities) from a cognitive and evolutionary perspective.


Mr Ben Tappin

I am primarily interested in moral beliefs as they pertain to the self/ingroup vs. others/outgroup.





Contact Us

The convenor for the SAP research group, Dr Joshua Henk Balsters, is happy to receive enquiries about the group's research activities and other news.


Dr Joshua Henk Balsters

Telephone: 01784 414406

Work with Us

If you're interested in coming to work with us, please see information about fellowship opportunities.


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