Professor at Leiden University


Trust me: look into my pupils

People often mimic each other’s facial expressions or postures without even knowing it, but in this new study, co-author Carsten de Dreu and I show that they also mimic the size of each other’s pupils, which can lead to increased trust. The findings reveal that participants who mimicked the dilated pupils of a partner were more likely to trust that… Read more »

Physiological synchrony: key to dating success?

Finding love in today’s society has become very different from what generations use to remember. The amount of people who meet their partner via online dating has grown rapidly. In 2014, in the Netherlands, 13% of the relationships developed online. In 2003 this was still less than 2% (CBS, 2014). In consequence, the development of romantic relationships is also changing.… Read more »

Bonobos’ attention attracted by emotions

(Klik hier voor de Nederlandse versie)   Bonobos – just like humans – give more attention to pictures that show other members of their species displaying emotional behaviour than to neutral scenes. Unlike humans, however, bonobos prefer to look at positive behaviours: social grooming, sex and yawning. This was discovered by the Leiden researcher Dr. Mariska Kret while conducting research… Read more »

From face to hand: attentional bias towards expressive hands in social anxiety (ook in het Nederlands)

Have you ever felt uncomfortable looking someone into the eyes? We all do sometimes, but socially anxious individuals do so to such an extent, that they often avoid eye contact completely. And this is interfering in their daily lives, because the eye-region conveys important emotional information that we normally spontaneously attend to and that is very useful during social interactions.… Read more »

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