Development and Social Behaviour Research Group

Developing Solutions

This group includes a team of developmental, social, and evolutionary psychologists. Our research examines (1) the development of motor, behavioural and cognitive processes, and (2) the social psychological processes affecting interpersonal, intergroup and interspecies attitudes, cognition, emotion, and behaviour. We conduct research with children and adults, as well as non-human primates, dogs and other animals. 

What are we Doing?

We specialise in developmental and social psychological research. Our areas of expertise include child safety, language development, decision-making, attention and memory, human-animal interaction, perspective-taking, handedness, identity, emerging adulthood, parenting, citizenship, justice and morality, wellbeing, dehumanization, emotion, prejudice, prosocial behaviour, and neurodevelopmental disorders such attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and autism.

We focus on a range of species, including humans (from pregnancy and new-born infants to older adults), dogs, non-human primates and fish. We have excellent facilities and equipment for our research including the Lincoln infant and child development lab, motor lab, and field sites for primate research. Our methods include intermodal preferential looking, eye-tracking, adult EEG, motion analysis, safety education training, elicitation methods, interviews, and response time measures. 

Our work is funded by a variety of prestigious funding bodies including the Economic and Social Research Council, British Academy, European Commission, US National Institute of Health, Templeton Religion Trust, and Arts Council England.


Why is it important?

As well as directly contributing to developmental and social psychology theory and knowledge, our research has significant and wide impacts on real world issues, and therefore on policy and practice. Our research group actively engage in consultancy work for government departments, businesses, and third-sector organisations (e.g.  World Health Organization, People United, Department for Work and Pensions, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, and the Leadership Foundation for Higher Education).


How are we different?

We are an interdisciplinary research group with a comprehensive and open-minded approach to psychology. We believe there is clear scientific value in crossing boundaries between psychology and traditionally distinct scientific disciplines like anthropology, economics, linguistics, (veterinary) medicine, and physiology. We foster a large community of postgraduate students and have established collaborations within our University, with other national and international Universities, and with charities and businesses. We organise and take part in public events, conferences and workshops, such as the Summer Scientists week, the Primate Society of Great Britain Conference, and workshops for safe interaction of children, adults and dogs (e.g. in Austria and Scotland). Via the path of interdisciplinarity, our research continues to produce significant real-life impact for society.








Dr Lesley Allinson

Senior Lecturer

Dr Stefano Belli


Dr Roger Bretherton

Principal Lecturer

Dr Rachel Bromnick

Principal Lecturer

Dr Susan Chipchase

Senior Lecturer

Dr Ruth Gaunt


Dr Paul Goddard

Senior Lecturer

Dr Nathan Heflick

Senior Lecturer

Dr Ava Horowitz

Senior Lecturer

Dr Patrick Hylton

Senior Lecturer

Dr Niko Kargas

Senior Lecturer

Dr Bonaventura Majolo


Dr Laëtitia Maréchal

Lecturer in Psychology

Dr Kirsten McKenzie Fender

Senior Lecturer

Prof Kerstin Meints

Professor in Developmental Psychology

Dr Kirsty Miller

Principal Lecturer

Dr Michael Mireku


Dr Karen Pfeffer

Senior Lecturer

Prof Alina Rodriguez

Professor in Psychology

Dr Julie Van de Vyver


Dr Emile van der Zee

Principal Lecturer

Dr Fenja Ziegler

Principal Lecturer




Aisha Ahmadi


Huda Alqahtani


Ibrahim Alyami


Amal Baswail


Victoria Brelsford


Charlotte Cartledge


Catia Correia Caeiro


Ravi Dave


Mirena Dimolareva 


Pengzhen Huang


Janine Just


Greta Kerulo


 Mariana Lobo Pinho


Laura Martinez Inigo


Rebecca Park


Lynn Pickerell


Heather Shaw


Ksenia Trischel