ISPP ECC Newsletter Spring 2016
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ISPP Early Career Committee
Newsletter Fall 2016 

The ISPP Early Career Committee (ECC) gives voice and visibility to the needs and interests of graduate students, junior faculty, and other early career scholars within ISPP. An Early Career Scholar is defined as a graduate student or person within eight years of having earned their degree. The ECC's goals include providing information and assistance to early career scholars' efforts to conduct political psychology research, helping them to develop their careers, and supporting their attendance at the ISPP annual meetings. 
2016 - 2017 ECC

Committee Chair:
Shelley McKeown Jones
University of Bristol, UK

Committee Chair-Elect:
Gary Smith
University of Central Florida, USA

Mentorship Program
Thia Sagherian Dickey
Queen's University Belfast, Northern Ireland
Pip Cawley
Washington State University, USA

Professional Development
Alexa Bankert
University of Georgia, USA

Femke Bakker
Leiden University, Netherlands 

Blog and Web Resources
Patricio Morales,  
University of Sussex, UK

Newsletter Co-Editors
Philip Chen
Macalester College,
Kevin McNicholl
Queen's University Belfast, Northern Ireland

We'd love to hear from you!
Hello Early Career Scholars,
Let me begin by saying that I am delighted to be your 2016-17 ISPP Early Career Committee Chair, and I look forward to representing the voice of Early Career Scholars over the coming year. I would like to sincerely thank Ex-Officio chair Sanne Rijkhoff and members of the 2015-2016 Early Career Committee (ECC) for all of their hard work, especially in ensuring that our transition from the Junior Scholars Committee to the Early Career Committee went smoothly.
I am happy to report that all of our ECC events were well-received at the ISPP annual conference in Warsaw. Our newly launched ‘Elevator Pitch’ event was strongly valued by attendees and we are looking forward to making this event even bigger and better next year. The mentoring luncheon was also a huge success with Early Career Scholars reporting on the value and importance of having an opportunity to meet with and get support from academic mentors. We also hosted two roundtable events, one on diversity in academia and one on political psychology in the media, both of which received excellent feedback. Our networking social hour was well attended by Early Career Scholars, including Summer Academy participants and for the second year, we gave out certificates of appreciation to our ECC members to thank them for their tenure. I would like to extend a big thank you to the ECC members who organised these events, to all of those who acted as mentors and sat on panels, and to John Jost, ISPP President 2015-16, for handing out certificates to ECC members. I would also like to thank ISPP, whose generous support enabled the ECC to sponsor thirteen travel grants for Early Career Scholars colleagues from around the world to join the meeting.
In this Newsletter we introduce the ECC members for 2016-2017 and look back on the annual conference and the Summer Academy in Warsaw. We also bring you our themed blog which is on the use of social media in political psychology and our advice column, written by Monica Schneider (Miami University, Ohio). In anticipation of next year, we have included information about ISPP awards and the applications for the 2017 meeting in Edinburgh, United Kingdom- we hope to see many of you there! New to the newsletter this year is our job and grants section, which we hope you will find useful. We would like to give a special mention to our ‘Connection Corner’ which aims to provide a platform to Early Career Scholars who are looking for connections with other scholars for instance to share a hotel room during the conference or to find co-authors for research projects. Provide your ad to our “Connection Corner” or any job vacancies you are aware of and we will publish these in our Spring Newsletter and on our Facebook page.
Be sure to stay up to date with all ECC developments through our Twitter, Facebook and our blog on Please do not hesitate to contact us at for questions, comments or to submit your contributions. Let us know what we could do better and how the ECC can continue to meet the needs of Early Career Scholars.
I look forward to seeing and working with many of you over the coming year and hope you enjoy this 2016 Fall Newsletter.
Shelley McKeown Jones
ISPP - ECC Chair 2016-2017
University of Bristol

Warsaw, Poland 

Early Career Roundtables
At the annual meeting in Warsaw, the Early Career Committee organised two roundtables on issues of relevance to early career political psychologists. Both events were well-attended and well-received by those in attendance. Below is a short summary of these roundtables. 

Taking Political Psychology Online: Ethical and Methodological Challenges

This roundtable aimed to address some of the questions and issues of relevance to early career political psychologists interested in conducting political psychological research online. It really reflected the diversity among political psychologists working with online methods, and each of the speakers offered up unique positions, based on their own differing methodological and epistemological perspectives. Sharon Coen (University of Salford) discussed the possibilities offered by the internet in terms of both doing research and building a professional identity, but also noted the limitations of generalisability and representativeness inherent in doing political research online. Thomas Leeper (London School of Economics and Political Science) addressed some of the key methodological and empirical challenges of conducting survey research online (e.g. how should we conceptualise and determine whether a participant is paying ‘attention’ in an online context?), as well as some of the ethical issues surrounding the use of online platforms such as MTurk. Simon Goodman (Coventry University) drew upon his experience of applying discursive psychology to online discussion boards to reflect on some of the methodological and ethical questions surrounding online research, such as the meaning of informed consent online. A sentiment echoed by each of the presenters was that the use of online methods offers many benefits to early career political psychologists and these new possibilities should definitely be embraced. However, at the same time, our use of online methods needs to be underpinned by solid theoretical questions as well as accompanied with an awareness of some of the ethical questions which go along with doing research online. Thanks to our participants for a great session!

Diversity in Academia

In Warsaw, the Early Career Committee also organized a roundtable that focused on diversity in academia. It is well-known that women and ethnic minorities are often underrepresented in academia. Felicia Pratto, Cristina Montiel, and Masi Noor provided unique insights about challenges faced when trying to publish on issues facing migrants, LGBT individuals, women, and people from the developing world. Many of these struggles emerge from the dominance of traditional “Western” paradigms in political psychology. The dominance of these paradigms makes it difficult to get research outside of this paradigm funded or published. Such institutional bias leads to an increased sense of isolation for scholars who attempt to re-orient the study of political psychology to include perspectives from the developing world or other minority groups. The Early Career Committee is grateful to the participants’ willingness to be part of this roundtable. 
Emma O'Dwyer
Gary Smith 
Professional Development Chairs
Elevator Pitch
The annual ISPP general meeting in Warsaw featured a new ECC event this year.  The first Elevator Pitch Contest was organized with the goal of providing training to early career scholars in articulating their research topics in the timespan of a few minutes only.  The purpose of the elevator pitch training was not to ‘dumb down’ one’s research or presenting one’s work in a patronizing manner, but rather to be able to concisely summarize the key aspects of one’s research topic in such a way that the listener – whether an academic in the same field or ‘layperson’ – will understand the research questions and findings. 
The Elevator Pitch event was originally advertised as a contest.  Howard Lavine (University of Minnesota) and Melinda Jackson (San Jose State University) generously agreed to be mentors, while the ECC chair (now ex-officio chair) Sanne Rijkhoff facilitated the sessions.  Spanning two early mornings, the mentors provided training through suggestions and advice combined with personal anecdotes from their own experiences on how to quickly “pitch” one’s research topic to someone in a concise way, in the hypothetical time it might take to ride an elevator up a number of flights in a tall building.
On the second morning, each early career scholar practiced pitching their research in 3 minutes, and received feedback from the mentor, as well as comments from the other participants.  While the event was originally advertised as a contest, the format naturally took on a more workshop style.
As a first run of this event, the elevator pitch activity got off to a great start.  In today’s fast-paced and highly competitive world, early career scholars may find the networking setting both daunting and difficult to manoeuvre.  The ECC hoped to provide a platform for early career scholars to practice pitching their research in a quick yet meaningful way.

Thia Sagherian-Dickey 
Mentorship Program

Mentoring Luncheon

This year’s Mentoring Luncheon in Warsaw took place with great success! 25 mentors were paired with 75 early career scholars during the lunch hour on the first day of the annual meeting, providing the mentees with the opportunity to connect with leading scholars and researchers in their respective sub-fields of political psychology. One of the main goals of this event is to offer long-term connections for career development and research advice beyond their supervisors’ at their respective institutions. We hope that this goal has been met this year and that the contacts made will be of long-term benefit.

We want to thank all of the mentors who generously dedicated their time at the annual meeting in Warsaw: Linda Tropp, Masi Noor, Kevin Durrheim, Helen Haste, John Jost, Leonie Huddy, Sam McFarland, George Marcus, Gian Vittorio Caprara, Cristina Montiel, Daniel Bar-Tal, Davide Morselli, Jacqueline van Stekelenburg, Andreas Zick, Bert Klandermans, Shawn Rosenberg, David Redlawsk, Maykel Verkuyten, Neil Fergusen, Tereza Capelos, Agnieska Golec de Zavala, Paul Nesbitt-Larking, Stanley Feldman, Christopher Cohrs and Martijn van Zomeren.

The feedback from this year’s mentoring luncheon was once again enthusiastic and positive from mentors and early career scholars alike. However, we do welcome any suggestions for the future. Please feel free to email us at if you have any questions or if you’re interested in being a mentor in Edinburgh 2017. Thia Sagherian-Dickey and Pip Cawley will be directing next year’s mentoring luncheon. We look forward to hearing from you!

Stavroula Chrona
Thia Sagherian-Dickey 
Mentorship Program
Greetings! I am thrilled to be returning as the Summer Academy’s Director for a second year. Last year’s Summer Academy was a success! Forty-three Fellows from across the globe participated in the Summer Academy, and participants varied in terms of their backgrounds. Fifty-one percent of Fellows were psychologists, 37% were from political science programs, and the remaining coming from other disciplines or outside of academia.

The instructors also mirrored the diversity that is very much integral to ISPP. Instructors from Israel, Poland, South Africa, the UK, and US participated. Our courses ranged from conflict resolution to neuroscience and featured a variety of methodological techniques, such as experimental analysis, discourse analysis, and survey design, to name a few.

It once again is approaching the time of year to think about participating in the Summer Academy. The 2017 Summer Academy and ISPP Annual Meeting will be held in Edinburgh, Scotland from June 29th – July 2nd, and the Summer Academy will take place from June 27 through June 29.  If you are interested in participating, please stay tuned. We will post regular updates on our Facebook page ( We will also advertise through the ISPP site and associated listserv.
Chris Weber
Director of the ISPP Summer Academy
 Associate Professor
School of Government and Public Policy
University of Arizona                



Dear Colleagues...

By Monica Schneider
Miami University
The following is a set of e-mails I sent to my new colleagues over the fall semester of 2015-2016. I’ve included links to articles across a variety of sources to help new faculty get off to a good start. Of course, this list isn’t exhaustive and I am constantly updating my list of resources that I think will be helpful for improving productivity and having a great career and a well-balanced life. I just found a few new ones that I wish I had when I first started – on having three things under review at all times (!) and even aiming for rejections.
I also invite you to “Pay it Forward.” Learn now how to be a good mentor so that you can help your future colleagues and, together, we can make academia more hospitable.

--How to start a mentoring relationship:

--Be a coach, not a guru:

August 15, 2015
Dear Colleagues,

Welcome to the 2015-2016 school year!
As you know, I have been setting up meetings with each of you to talk about how to make this year productive, happy, and fulfilling for you. While the mentoring for our tenure-track faculty is more formal than that for visiting faculty, we all want to help you succeed in your position. You have an army of people ready and willing to help - the problem is that they don't always know how! It's a good idea, therefore, to think about what YOUR needs are - what are your greatest challenges (aside from finding more hours in the day!) and where can we help you think of solutions to those challenges? I know that this means you have to admit your vulnerabilities which can be difficult for perfectionist academics, but doing so will help us help you. With that in mind, I have been reading a variety of columns on the topic of mentoring and I thought that this would be a good one to read to help you identify areas of need. Be prepared to tell your mentor what you need to maximize your success!

August 25, 2015
Dear Colleagues,
This week's article is all about having a life OUTSIDE of academia. It's so important to find things you enjoy! For me, exercise is the first thing that I schedule in my week. On the tenure track, I did the following:
--cycled with Gears 4 Beers (a drinking group with a cycling problem!)
--joined a running group and trained for a half marathon
--joined Miami's Master's Swim program (ok, I'm a terrible swimmer) 
--P2 - Planned Parenthood group which raises money, has events, and has a feminist book club
--Cooking Light club
While on the tenure track, I've done several long bike rides, runs, triathlons and duathlons, traveled, read tons of fiction, met & married my husband and had two babies (#2 came right after my tenure decision). It is absolutely possible (and preferable) to have a balanced life while doing this job!
September 1, 2015
Dear Colleagues,
Now that the first week of classes is over, I thought I would share this article on good habits of highly productive new faculty. Start up tips for new faculty.

September 15, 2015
Dear Colleagues,
This week’s articles are all about saying NO. We all need to say no sometimes. Maybe you need to say NO to the student who is taking up far too much of your office hours. Or to the journal who wants you to review a manuscript – even if it’s in your area and you would be a good reviewer. Would doing a review prevent you from getting YOUR manuscript out the door? Book orders for next semester are due soon – think about saying NO to lots of new reading for yourself for next semester!

September 29, 2015
Dear Colleagues,
This week’s article is all about ONE way to make a weekly schedule to ensure that you are able to get done what you need to and still have time and prioritize writing. I don’t do my schedule *exactly* like this. I block out teaching and office hours first, to be sure. And any personal or professional meetings. Next, I block off exercise since I find it to be crucial to my productivity. Then I block off writing. I try to limit anything that I do for teaching during my teaching days (that doesn’t always work). But there are many ways to work google calendar to try to block off specific time.
I also find that “writing time” is too vague for me. I try to make more specific weekly goals like “work on introduction” or “write 300 words” or sometimes “face paragraph that I don’t want to deal with.”
I hope this is helpful. As always, let me know if you have any questions or issues.

October 20, 2015
Dear Colleagues,
We are now midway through the semester. I’m posting two articles today – the first is another one about finding time for writing. I’m very proud of myself – last week I blew off my entire to-do list (including reading grad student comps until the last minute) so that I could get more writing time in. You know what? No one died. My class wasn’t a failure. And I was still able to ask good questions at the student’s defense.
The second article is one of my favorites – it’s a mentoring map. The idea is that we all have lots of different mentors for different purposes. The person I’d go to with a teaching question, for instance, might not be the same person I’d go to for mentoring on introducing me to people in the discipline. Going through this map may be helpful for you (and your mentor) to identify areas of need and gaps in your mentoring that could help.  You might ask your mentor to connect you with people across campus (or beyond) to help with any gaps.
October 27, 2015
Dear Colleagues,
Two new articles that I found that I just had to share!
The first is about your “shadow” CV. What would my CV look like if it recorded the rejections of my career? It’s easy to look at the successes of fellow faculty and feel intimidated. But every one of us has a shadow CV that has many rejections that we aren’t talking about. The article that I thought was going to be the best one from my dissertation was rejected something like 8 times. The article that is probably my most cited was rejected by a journal I had hoped to publish in – I read the rejection while feeding my (then) 2 month old at 5:30 in the morning and have no recollection of rewriting it for its eventual home in Political Psychology. I definitely take time after every rejection but I know that the key is to complain for a few days and then sit down with it and face the easy stuff. I write on printouts of the reviews and start noting things in the file. Then I move to the hard stuff and I find that the more I read the reviews, the more manageable it seems. I think the tendency is for us to hide our rejections when it actually might be beneficial to ask for help!
The second link is about Academic Writing Month. Did you know that November is AcWriMo? It’s late in the semester. You are tired from grading and you just want the semester to be over. But now is NOT the time to slack on your writing and say you are going to do it next year! AcWriMo is a place where you can publicly declare your intentions and hold yourself accountable to your goals.

Gary Smith & Rebecca Schiel 
University of Central Florida
Rebecca and I were extremely honored to receive the 2016 Roberta Sigel Award for the best paper by an Early Career Scholar. Rebecca and I are both Ph.D. Candidates in the Security Studies program at the University of Central Florida. Rebecca received her Master’s degree in Public Affairs with a focus on International Relations from the University of Massachusetts at Boston. Her research focuses on coups d’etat, mutinies, state capacity, goods allocation, and institutions. She has published research in this area with Jonathan Powell and Trace Lasley in Studies in Comparative International Development. 

I received my Master’s degree in Political Science with a focus in International Relations at the University of Central Florida. My research focuses on the psychological correlates of foreign policy behaviors including, but not limited to: the initiation of war, militarized disputes, civil war intervention, and repressive tactics of authoritarian regimes. My research on the psychological traits of leaders has been presented at the annual meetings of the International Society of Political Psychology, International Studies Association, and the Southern Political Science Association. My co-authored research on the scholarship of teaching and learning has been published in PS: Political Science & Politics and Politics.

Our paper asked if the psychological traits of authoritarian leaders can affect the level of repression used by the state. We argued that, in authoritarian regimes, it is easier to assign domestic policy outcomes to a single head of state. Therefore, the traits unique to those heads of state should have an effect on the amount of political terror a regime uses against its population. Using leadership trait analysis (LTA) we find that psychological traits can indeed help us understand the willingness of autocrats to repress. Furthermore, we find that these effects are different across different types of authoritarian regimes. These findings stand in contrast to several studies of repression that focus on rational cost-benefit analyses and assumptions about various structural factors. We demonstrate that controlling for leader-specific factors helps make the puzzle of state repressive behavior clearer. 

When asked what advice we could give to our fellow Early Career Scholars, one prominent suggestion came to mind: collaborate. Working with a co-author forces you to challenge your assumptions about the way the world works, exposes you to new and different research agendas, and affords you the opportunity to learn from your colleagues. The benefits of such collaboration can be limitless.

Experiments in social media for the average social science researcher

Emma Bäck
University of Gothenburg

Nils Gustafsson
Lund University

Social media are not only an important factor in itself if we want to understand contemporary society, but also serve as an exhilarating arena for studying human behaviour. For instance, social media offer the potential of - by manipulating user feeds - combining the large-N feature of big data with the high internal validity of the experimental design. A small number of widely publicised Facebook experiments have brought about increased attention to this (Bond et al, 2012; Kramer et al, 2014). The prospect of getting hold on all of this beautiful data emanating from social media is tempting.
Practical and ethical problems easily arise when starting to think about design. The practical problems are connected to the fact that in order to start manipulating for instance Facebook user feeds, you have to cooperate intimately with Facebook's research team and possibly adapt to their research goals. Additionally, since Facebook's algorithms are confidential, normal transparency would be difficult to attain. Ethical problems include that in most cases, informed consent is not obtained from participants and debriefing is difficult (Ruth & Pfeffer, 2014; Meyer, 2014).
Another way of using Facebook for experiments is to create "fake" profiles and let participants interact with each other under guidance of the researchers (cf. Deters & Mehl, 2013; Tobin et al, 2015). This however, gives rise to other problems, not least because Facebook's terms of service explicitly forbid the creation of fake profiles (
A third, perhaps more feasible, way is to try to emulate aspects of social media in a lab setting. This has pros and cons compared to the real deal. Pros include increased control on the researcher's part, as well as increased transparency and accordance with ethical guidelines. Cons - of course - include that it is very difficult if not impossible to create a lab version of a social media service that captures the inherent social aspect of it, because many social media experiences are typically based on interacting with your personal network of friends and other contacts.
However, some aspects of the social media experience are easier to imitate and thus study in a controlled setting. In an ongoing research project on young people and political participation in Sweden that both authors are working on, we are attempting to study how social pressure influences decisions to partake in political activities. We decided to include a series of experiments, and because of some of the reasons we have pointed out above, the design will build upon a paradigm that emulates certain aspects of social media services such as Facebook.
The paradigm that we are building on is called Ostracism Online (Wolf et al, 2015), according to the authors developed to keep social interaction experimentally controlled; to provide researchers with flexibility to manipulate aspects of the social situation to fit various research targets; to be suitable for online data gathering; to be suitable for studying later group behaviour; and to have high ecological validity (ibid, p. 361). In the setting, the participant chooses an avatar and writes a short profile description, upon which the participant is confronted with a number of other avatars/profiles. These other profiles are not real people, but generated by the researcher: avatars can be designed to vary in age, ethnicity, gender, and so on, allowing for manipulation of psychological closeness, etc. The participant is prompted to "like" other avatars based on their views, descriptions, etc., at the same time as these avatars appear to "like" the participant's profile (or not). This is of course very well suited to study how an experience of social exclusion or inclusion can influence attitudes and behaviour. After the interaction, the participant is asked to complete a short survey.
Wolf et al (2015) show that participants experience feelings comparable to those who experience social exclusion in other settings and in previous research (ie. they are more sad, angry, etc.), whereas participants who receive a high number of "likes" from the avatars are generally happier, etc. This is an indication of the usefulness of the paradigm to capture this experience.
In short, lab versions of social media have several deficiencies (especially concerning the lack of "real" social relationships), but we have found that they can be very useful to capture certain limited aspects of the social media experience. Since an increasing volume of political discussion and activism is taking place in social media, methodological innovation in political psychology is, we believe, necessary and promising for future research. For scholars early in their careers, there is a long and exciting journey ahead in the study of and on social media.
[This article is based on a longer text in Swedish to be published in a textbook on digital methods early in 2016 (Bäck & Gustafsson, forthcoming)]
Bäck, Emma & Gustafsson, Nils (forthcoming). Experiment i sociala medier: går det att härma Facebook i labbet? [Experiments in social media: is it possible to imitate Facebook in the lab?] In Kullenberg, Christopher (ed) Digitala metoder i samhällsvetenskap och humaniora. [Digital methods in social science and the humanities] Lund: Gleerups.
Bond, Robert M., Fariss, Christopher J., Jones, Jason J., Kramer, Adam D. I., Marlow, Cam­eron, Settle, Jaime E. & Fowler, James H. (2012). A 61-million-person experiment in social influence and political mobilization. Nature, 489, s. 295-298.
Deters, Fenne große & Mehl, Matthias R. (2013). Does posting Facebook status updates increase or decrease loneliness? An online social networking experiment. Social Psychological and Personality Science, 4(5), s. 579-586. (2016). Terms of service.
Kramer, Adam D. I., Guillory, Jamie T., & Hancock, Jeffrey T. (2014). "Experimental evidence of massive-scale emotional contagion through social networks. PNAS, 111(24), s. 8788-8790.
Meyer, Michelle 2014. Everything you need to know about Facebook’s controversial emotion experiment. Wired 30 June 2014. Viewed on 16 August 2016.
Ruths, Derek & Pfeffer, Jürgen (2014). Social media for large studies of behavior. Science 346(6213), s. 1063-1064.
Tobin, Stephanie J., Vanman, Eric J., Verreynne, Marnize & Saeri, Alexander K. (2015). Threats to belonging on Facebook: Lurking and ostracism. Social Influence, 10(1), s. 31-42.
Wolf, Wouter, Levordashka, Ana, Ruff, Johanna R., Kraaijeveld, Steven, Lueckmann, Jan-Matthis. & Williams, Kipling D. (2015). Ostracism Online: A social media ostracism paradigm. Behavioral Research, 47(2), s. 361-373.
In this edition of the newsletter we would like to use this space to introduce the new Early Career Scholars’ Committee.  As always, we would also like to encourage early career scholars to contact us at to use this section of the newsletter to advertise any relevant activities.  This may be to promote a conference you are organising, or requesting a partner to collaborate on a research project.  Simply contact us, and we can work with you on spreading the word among the large number of early career scholars who subscribe to this edition. 
Shelley McKeown Jones,
University of Bristol
ECC chair

Shelley is currently a Lecturer in Psychology at the University of Bristol. Before joining Bristol, she lectured at Leiden University College and the University of Hertfordshire. Shelley particularly enjoys teaching social/political/peace psychology and research methods. She completed her PhD at the University of Ulster in 2012 and her research focuses on understanding and improving intergroup relations, primarily through the lens of intergroup contact theory and social identity theory. Shelley has published a number of articles, book chapters and a book on identity, segregation and peacebuilding in Northern Ireland. Her career aspiration is to become a full professor.
Gary Smith
University of Central Florida
ECC chair elect

Gary is a Ph.D. Candidate in the Security Studies program at the University of Central Florida. He teaches courses on the causes of interstate war at UCF. His research interests include the role that elite psychology plays in the decision to initiate conflict between and within states. He co-authored research on the scholarship of teaching and learning in political science has appeared in PS: Political Science & Politics and Politics.
Aleka Bankert
University of Georgia
Professional development coordinator

Alexa Bankert is an assistant professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Georgia. After completing her B.A. in Political Science at the Freie Universität Berlin and the University of Pennsylvania in 2011, she received her Ph.D. in Political Science from Stony Brook University in 2016. Alexa’s current research focuses on the development, measurement, and consequences of partisan identities in two-party and multi-party systems. Her work has appeared in peer-reviewed journals such as Political Psychology, Political Behavior, and Electoral Studies. She is the recipient of several awards including the Distinguished Junior Scholars Award given by the Political Psychology Section of the American Political Science Association, the Janet Box-Steffensmeier Award for Outstanding Female Graduate Students in Methodology, and the Milton Lodge Award for Outstanding Research Potential.
Thia Sagherian-Dickey
Queen’s University Belfast
Mentoring Lunch Coordinator

I am a PhD candidate (QUB) investigating the dynamics of intergroup trust, focusing on Northern Ireland and Lebanon, and I hope to remain in academia upon completion of my doctoral studies. I have research experience through a number of projects examining generalized social and intergroup trust in Northern Ireland, contact and housing mobility in Belfast, prejudice reduction in Beirut and HR policies for women in the Middle East.  I also do some lab demonstrating and teaching at my university, and was part of a team that coordinated and taught a module on culture in the Middle East in Beirut.
Pip Cawley
Washington State University
Mentoring Lunch Coordinator

Bio: I am delighted and honored to join the Early Career Committee this year.  My current research examines domestic terrorism recruitment tactics. I am passionate about teaching and strive to make a real difference in my students' lives. I am also a single mother and when I am not working, I enjoy gardening and cooking with my daughter. I am excited to get to work and looking forward to the adventure ahead.
Femke Bakker
Leiden University
Mentoring tea coordinator

Femke E. Bakker is a PhD candidate at the Institute of Political Science at Leiden University, after she received an MPhil within the research master programme of the same university. Earlier she studied acting and was working as a professional actor and screen writer for about two decades. Femke is interested in studying unexplored micro-foundations of theories that are often assumed rather than empirically tested. In her PhD research she studies the micro-foundations of several (and some even opposing) explanations for the ‘democratic peace’ from a political psychological
perspective. She has conducted experiments with the US, China and Russia. Her dissertation is expected to be completed in the first half of 2017.
Patricio Saavedra Morales
University of Sussex
Web Resources Coordinator

Currently, I am a Ph.D. student of Dr. John Drury at the University of Sussex. There, I have conducted research on the impact of political context and social identity on protesters’ behaviour in two different countries, Chile and the UK. My main aim is to explore the possible impact of the social structures and political opportunities over the people participation in protests, as well as on the type of action (violent/not violent) that they carry on using mixed methods. Previously, I worked with the Professors Roberto Gonzalez and Jorge Manzi as research assistant and coordinator of their Social Psychology Lab at the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile. Furthermore, I was a teacher assistant in the Research Methodology, Methods of Quantitative Research, Social Psychology, and Philosophical Fundamentals courses in the School of Psychology at the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile.
Tina Keil
Web Resources Coordinator
University of Exeter

Tina is a third-year PhD candidate at the University of Exeter. Her research focuses on everyday, mundane contact in public spaces and how modern technology can be used to capture and measure contact in real-time. Previously, she has worked as a web developer and programmer both self-employed and within academia, while pursuing her interest in psychology through the Open University alongside her professional career. After gaining an MSc in Psychological Research Methods in 2013, she decided to turn her part-time passion for social psychology into something more concrete, enabling her to combine and bring together her interest in technology and psychology.

Philip Chen
University of Calgary
Newsletter editor

Philip Chen is a postdoctoral scholar in the Department of Political Science at the University of Calgary, where he works with Dr. Melanee Thomas examining stereotype threat and the political gender gap. He studies individual voters (and their traits and identities) and their interaction with campaign and political communications. Prior to arriving in Calgary, Dr. Chen was a Visiting Assistant Professor at Macalester College for the 2015-2016 academic year, teaching classes on political psychology, political behavior, and political communication. Dr. Chen hopes to continue his teaching and research as a tenure-track political science professor at a liberal arts college.
Kevin McNicholl
Queen's University Belfast
Newsletter Editor

Kevin focuses on statistical analysis of the wealth of survey and census data that has been collected in the North of Ireland since 1986. He is researching the ‘Northern Irish’ identity as a potential common ingroup identity that can be inclusive of members of both traditions.  He also looks at discourses of Northern Irishness in the Northern Ireland Assembly to view how understandings of this category are constructed.  Currently, Kevin works in the History, Anthropology, Philosophy and Politics department of Queen’s University Belfast and has tutored modules in international politics and conflict.  In the future he would very much like to continue researching intergroup relations and understandings of national identity in divided societies.

For more information about the ECC officers, please read our blog:
Call for Papers

Special Issue for Social Justice Research


Guest Editors:
H. Hannah Nam (New York University/Stony Brook University), John T. Jost (New York University), and Stanley Feldman (Stony Brook University)
Submission deadline for one-page abstracts: April 30, 2016
(please email to
Submission deadline for papers (based on accepted abstracts): September 30, 2016
We expect that the special issue will appear in 2017.
The study of fairness and social justice using neuroscience and other biological methods is becoming increasingly widespread. Examining the neurobiological basis of justice-related behaviors, beliefs, and attitudes has tremendous potential to unify theoretical and empirical insights across seemingly disparate levels of analysis. The main aim of this special issue is to bring together diverse research programs incorporating methods and theories of neuroscience and biology (such as fMRI, EEG, TMS, and genetics, among others) to the understanding of fairness and social justice. For this special issue of SJR, which is projected to be published in mid-2017 and guest edited by H. Hannah Nam (New York University/Stony Brook University), John T. Jost (New York University), and Stanley Feldman (Stony Brook University), we welcome submissions of theoretical and empirical papers incorporating neurobiological techniques and approaches in the study of justice-related topics, including (but not limited to) empathy, fairness, morality, ideology, gender, (in)equality, intergroup dynamics, collective action, and social change. 

Social Justice Research is an international multidisciplinary forum for the publication of original papers that have implications of sufficient scope to be important to all social scientists investigating the origins, structures, and consequences of justice in human affairs. The journal encompasses the justice-related work (using traditional and novel approaches) of all social scientists—psychologists, sociologists, anthropologists, economists, policy scientists, political scientists, legal researchers, management scientists, and others. By its multidisciplinary approach, Social Justice Research hopes to further the integration of the various social science perspectives.

All submissions, including those that are invited based on one-page abstracts (which should be emailed to, will go through the usual SJR peer-review process. They should be submitted using the online system, specifying that the submission is for the special issue on the “Neurobiology of Fairness and Social Justice.” Instructions for authors are available at

For any questions about the special issue, please feel free to contact us at,, or
Events Outside ISPP
EASP Medium Size Meeting on the Psychology of Political Ideology: Insights from Intergroup Approaches

Thursday, 23.06.2016 til Sunday, 26.06.2016

Organisers: Jutta Proch & Thomas Kessler 
Contact: Jutta Proch at

The aim of the EASP medium sized meeting is to bring together researchers who are interested in the tricky relation between political ideology and psychological processes. One main question is whether psychological dispositions filter and constrain political attitudes.

Important insights into this question have been made by focusing on the relation between individual differences in the psychological disposition of people (e.g., rigidity, risk aversion) and their susceptibility to particular ideological content. We attempt to complement such a hitherto emphasis on individual dispositions, by focusing on political ideology through the lenses of intergroup approaches. Are ideologies also shaped by group processes, such as group identities, ingroup cohesion and transmission biases?

Moreover, in recent years, research on individual differences between conservatives and liberals has been criticized as “politicized psychology” and wishful thinking. Here, we may discuss the potential of group processes on biased perceptions and perspective divergences as well as their effect on social and political psychological research itself. We also would like to discuss meta-theoretical questions, such as how to take researcher’s potential biases into account, and whether unbiased political psychological theory is possible.

The format of this medium-size meeting is single-session, with a strong focus on intensive discussion of unresolved underlying issues reflected in the schedule.

EASP Medium Size Meeting on Experience-based versus information-based attitude processes: On the psychology of attitudes

Thursday, 21.07.2016 til Sunday, 24.07.2016

Organizers: Christian Unkelbach, Anne Gast, Sascha Topolinski, Pablo Briñol, Geoff Haddock, Rob Holland, Greg Maio, Rich Petty, Duane Wegener

Contact: Christian Unkelbach, 

Our evaluations towards objects in the world can be based on two completely different types of sources. On the one hand, attitudes can be based on one’s own experience (e.g., mere exposure; conditioning). On the other hand, attitudes can be based on information that is shared by third parties (e.g., persuasion; social media). Although the distinction between experience versus information has been around for a longtime, recent years have seen a rise in relevant theorizing and empirical research, for example in work on attitude strength, evaluative conditioning, embodied cognition, dual and single process models, automaticity, risk seeking, and the effects of social media. While these topics all relate to the distinction of experience based and information based attitudes, approaches and terminology vary largely. We hope that the meeting on experience-based versus information-based attitude processes will contribute to developing a common understanding and mutual exchange, and encourages new collaborations for future research.

SPSSI/EASP Joint Meeting on Understanding Hate Crimes: Multi-Disciplinary Analyses

Monday, 11.07.2016 til Wednesday, 13.07.2016
University of Connecticut, Storrs

Organisers: Rupert Brown and Mark Walters (Sussex University), 
Blair T. Johnson and Megan Iacocca (University of Connecticut)

The problem of hate crime (bias crime) in many societies is regrettably growing rather than diminishing. In Europe and the US increases over the past two years have been observed, many of these incidents following international ‘trigger events’ including major geo-political conflicts and/or high profile terrorist attacks. Hate crime is a significant concern to policy-makers and social scientists alike, not least because of the deleterious effects it has on those directly victimised, but also because it is commonly assumed that incidents have harmful indirect impacts on other members of the victim’s identity group and on societal cohesion more generally. 

Given the globalised nature of hate crime, with all its social psychological, political, criminological and legal ramifications, we believe it is imperative that an international and multidisciplinary approach be adopted. Thus, we invite behavioural scientists, legal scholars, criminologists, political scientists, social workers, human rights scholars, and policy-makers to take part. As well as established researchers, we hope also to attract doctoral and postdoctoral scholars so that they may benefit from exchanging ideas and study results with their more senior colleagues. 

A variety of presentation formats are envisaged. The majority will comprise 30 minute presentations followed by a period of questions and discussion. There may also be some panel discussions in which panel members will have a few minutes to outline a new research agenda or theoretical perspective, followed by a wider discussion amongst participants. We intend to exploit both the small size of the meeting and the extensive time available to us to facilitate as much productive discussion as possible. Attendees will hear about new hate crime research and will be able to network with leading experts outside of psychology, swap ideas across jurisdictions and between disciplines, and form new research collaborations.

Thanks to SPSSI/EASP support, we are able to cover the accommodation and subsistence costs of all participants, leaving them only to find travel costs from their own resources. Graduate students, faculty members, and policy makers are all invited to apply for attendance.

Association for Psychological Science


***New Section***

In this section of the newsletter we will advertise some available positions that may be of interest for early career scholars in the area of political psychology.  Please contact us with any upcoming positions for our next edition in the Spring of 2017.  


Munk School of Global Affairs- University of Toronto


Post-Doctoral Position in Political Science with a Specialisation in Political Behaviour


Research Associate (Social Psychology)


ECC Online

The ISPP Early Career Committee wants to connect with you! Join in the conversation on Twitter (@ISPP_ECC), Facebook (ISPPJuniorScholars) and our blog ( Stay up-to-date on conferences, publications, open positions, and discussions of interest to scholars in political psychology. Also, check us out our Wikipedia page and get in touch via email (
The Early Career Committee is soliciting articles to be featured on the ISPP ECC Blog by early career political psychologists. These articles can range from communicating your research to a more general audience to writing about current social issues in the world through an interdisciplinary, political, sociological, psychological lens. Articles are solicited on a rolling basis.
We also feature a Kudos column where once every other month, an early career scholar talks about his/her experience in the political psychology field. Further, in these columns, researchers tell us about their future steps and the practical implications of their scientific work. This is an excellent way to see the contribution of up and coming political psychologists from a range of different institutions, regions, and disciplines!
As we move forward, we would welcome contributions, ideas, comments and feedback on our Kudos column and blog articles in general. We’d love to hear from YOU! Please, feel free to share your articles and comments with Patricio Saavedra Morales and Tina Keil, the ISPP ECC Web Coordinators for 2016-17.
Our latest blog entries include:
  • The article “On the nature of social change” by Dr Huseyin Cakal, University of Exeter (
  • A Kudos column by Dr Faouad Bou Zeineddine, KwaZulu-Natal University (
Upcoming thematic blog entries and Kudos will include:
  • A Kudos column by Dr Gloria Jimenez-Moya, Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile (Oct. 2016).
  • A thematic column about gender bias in the academia by Dr Soledad de Lemus Martin, Universidad de Granada (Nov. 2016).
  • A Kudos column by Richard Philpot about how groups may create the conditions for collective self-regulation and violence reduction – as well as violence escalation – in examples of public space aggression, University of Exeter (Dec. 2016).
  • A thematic column about the emergence of solidarity among actors and observers by Aafke van Mourik, University of Groningen (Jan. 2017).
Patricio Saavedra Morales
Tina Keil

ECC Blog and Web Resources

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