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Dr Matthew Gervais
Lecturer in Psychology


I'm an evolutionary and cultural psychologist with a background in anthropology. My research takes a multi-level approach to human sociality, seeking to understand the mutual constitution and co-evolution of human emotions, social relationships, and social structures. I use a range of descriptive and confirmatory methods, including long-term participant observation, semi-structured interviews, cultural domain analysis, economic games, and social psychological surveys. I maintain an active field site working with indigenous iTaukei communities in the Fiji Islands. I also collaborate on multi-site comparative studies investigating human psychological and behavioural variation.


PhD 2013 - Biological Anthropology, University of California, Los Angeles

MA 2008 - Biological Anthropology, University of California, Los Angeles

BS/BA 2006 - Psychobiology/Philosophy/Anthropology, Binghamton University SUNY

Newest selected publications

Dale, R., Bryant, GA., Manson, JH. and Gervais, MM. (2020) 'Body synchrony in triadic interaction'. Royal Society Open Science, 7 (9). pp. 1 - 16. ISSN: 2054-5703 Open Access Link

Journal article

Pisor, AC., Gervais, MM., Purzycki, BG. and Ross, CT. (2020) 'Preferences and constraints: the value of economic games for studying human behaviour'. Royal Society Open Science, 7 (6). pp. 192090 - 192090. ISSN: 2054-5703 Open Access Link

Journal article

Kline, MA., Gervais, MM., Moya, C. and Boyd, RT. (2019) 'Irrelevant-action imitation is short-term and contextual: Evidence from two under-studied populations'. Developmental Science, 23 (3). pp. e12903. ISSN: 1363-755X

Journal article

Brewis, A., Wutich, A., du Bray, MV., Maupin, J., Schuster, RC. and Gervais, MM. (2018) 'Community hygiene norm violators are consistently stigmatized: Evidence from four global sites and implications for sanitation interventions'. Social Science and Medicine, 220. pp. 12 - 21. ISSN: 0277-9536

Journal article

Manson, JH., Gervais, MM. and Bryant, GA. (2018) 'General trust impedes perception of self-reported primary psychopathy in thin slices of social interaction'. PLoS ONE, 13 (5). pp. e0196729 - e0196729. ISSN: 1932-6203

Journal article
More publications(8)