Advances in Intergroup Contact Research: Showcasing, Consolidating, Deconstructing and Innovating the Science of Social Integration

This time last week, Professor Fiona White, along with Rachel Maunder and Elise Boccanfuso, were presenting their research in Newcastle at the joint SASP-SPSSI group meeting entitled “Advances in Intergroup Contact Research: Showcasing, Consolidating, Deconstructing and Innovating the Science of Social Integration”.

The group meeting was attended by international experts on intergroup contact, including big names like Linda Tropp (pictured) and Miles Hewstone, as well as a cohort of up-and-coming early career researchers, and even a pod of dolphins. Together, we discussed current trends and issues in research, directions for the future, and how our expertise can be used to shape policy and create lasting social change across the globe.


The SUPIR Lab attends SASP 2019

SUPIR Lab members Rachel Maunder, Ruth Kuntzman, Lauren Harvey,
Peta O’Flynn and Elise Boccanfuso, alongside lab director Professor Fiona White presented their recent research at the annual conference of the Society of Australasian Social Psychologists last week at UNSW.

Our presentations spanned across the entire three day conference, and were featured in two symposiums, generating substantial discussion in the audience. Fiona was also granted the honor of introducing the keynote speaker, Professor Kerry Kawakami.


Society of Australasian Social Psychologists Conference: Sydney, 2019

This year’s Society of Australasian Social Psychologists‘ annual conference was held in Sydney, Australia. SUPIR Lab Manager Professor Fiona White will be presenting her research at the conference, along with SUPIR Lab members Stefano Verrelli, Ruth Kuntzman, and Rachel Maunder.

Register now to attend!

The SASP annual conference will be followed by a joint SASP-SPSSI small group meeting on intergroup contact, which will be held in Newcastle, Australia.


New research reveals how the marriage equality debate damaged LGBT Australians’ mental health

Although Australia has now achieved marriage equality, the topics of sexuality and gender identity continue to spark heated – and often discriminatory – public debates.

Most recently, the issues of religious freedoms and anti-discrimination laws, the Safe Schools program, and gay conversion therapy have dominated public and political discourse.

New research has suggested that such divisive debates have the potential to harm the mental health of LGBT people. These findings come from our nationwide study conducted during the Australian Marriage Law Postal Survey in 2017.

Read more here.


SUPIR Lab members are awarded First Class Honours in Psychology

Congratulations to SUPIR Lab members Elise and Peta on submitting their empirical honours theses. Both Peta and Elise received High Distinctions for their research, and Peta was awarded the Dick Thompson Prize for the Best Honours’ Empirical Thesis in the area of Social Psychology for 2018. Lab members Rachel and Stefano are past recipients of this prestigious award. Great work!


How research is helping to reduce prejudice between people online

The internet often gets a bad rap, and for good reason. Social media use can contribute to poorer mental health in teens. It can also be used to manipulate users’ emotions, and to disseminate misinformation and click bait to sway public opinion.

Despite this, research demonstrates that, when used appropriately, the internet can be a powerful source for social good. When individuals from different groups interact positively and cooperatively online, society may change for the better.

Read more here.