The four main research areas within the social psychology group are affect and emotions, attitudes and values, risk perception and environment, and social identity. We also undertake some research on social cognitive neuroscience, examining the neural underpinnings of social perception and emotions (in collaboration with colleagues in Cognitive Neuroscience and CUBRIC).
Members of the social psychology group use a range of concepts and levels of analysis to understand and predict social behaviour. There is a substantial degree of overlap between the primary research themes and, as a result, there are high levels of collaboration between individual researchers.
Our research is organised into four themes:
- What role does emotion play in interpersonal and intergroup relations?
- How does mood influence reasoning and memory?
- How do people organise their attitudes and values?
- How do attitudes change over time and shape behaviour?
- How do individuals and communities perceive and respond to environmental and technological risks (e.g., climate change, nuclear power, nanotechnologies, radon)?
- What individual, social and institutional factors influence these risk perceptions and behavioural responses?
- What are the links among social identity processes, intergroup threat, and intergroup emotions?
- What are the determinants of intergroup hostility and intergroup cooperation?