Professor Alex Haslam
Honorary Professor

Research

Research interests

Organizational psychology. Work looks at the contribution of social identity and group membership to a range of organizational processes, with a particular emphasis on leadership and stress. This is exemplified by two key texts: Psychology in Organizations: The Social Identity Approach (Sage, 2004) and The New Psychology of Leadership: Identity, Influence and Power (Psychology Press, 2011, with S. Reicher and M. Platow).

Social psychology. Work explores issues at the heart of research into prejudice and and intergroup relations. Programmatic work deals specifically with topics of stereotyping, extremism, tyranny and resistance.

Research projects

The BBC Prison Study

In December 2001, Alex Haslam (University of Exeter) and Steve Reicher (University of St Andrews) collaborated with the BBC to conduct a major investigation of group processes within a simulated prison environment. The study was one of the largest conducted in social psychology in the last 30 years.

The story of this research was subsequently told in the BBC2 programme The Experiment.  The progamme succeeded in marrying ground-breaking television with cutting-edge social science. 

In the nine-day study Haslam and Reicher collected social, clinical and organisational data from 15 participants in order to test theoretical ideas about the psychology of leadership and power, stress and well-being, tyranny and resistance. The results were led to a series of publications in leading scientific journals (more than any other field study in social psychology) and the study itself is now a "core study" on the OCR A-level syllabus.

The official website for the study (which contains a range of resources for students and teachers) can be accessed here.

Research networks

IPSIS (Identity and the Psychology of Self in Society)

Back | Top of page | Edit Profile | Refresh page