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Prof.dr. Naomi Ellemers

Distinguished university professor

Research Interests

In my research on group processes and relations between groups, I examine the way people’s feelings, thoughts and actions are affected by the groups to which they belong. Whereas in many cases people work together in groups because they depend on each other to achieve desired outcomes, I am interested in the non-material reasons for people to think of themselves and behave in terms of group memberships. In line with Social Identity Theory I therefore address the circumstances that lead people to identify as members of social groups (instead of seeing themselves as separate individuals). I also examine how the degree of social identification affects the way they perceive and feel about themselves and others, and how they behave towards those who belong to the same group, or towards members of other groups. This approach helps me to understand a range of problems in social and organizational psychology. For instance, why people are motivated to work together in teams, how they will perform on different types of tasks, and when they are most likely to be creative and open to change.

Themes and publications