Professor Hanna Zagefka

Personal profile




Professor Hanna Zagefka is a psychologist with expertise in intergroup relations, social identity, acculturation, prejudice, and intergroup helping. She studies situations in which group identities are important drivers of behaviours. For example, she investigates why donation appeals following some humanitarian disasters trigger more generous donations than others, and she has co-edited a book on the topic (‘Intergroup Helping’, Springer).

Put plainly, she investigates questions such as these: Why do people donate more to victims of some disasters over others? Why do some people see multiculturalism as a good thing and others as a threat? How do group memberships (such as your nationality or ethnicity) affect how you see the world, and how you are treated by others?

Hanna’s work has been published in leading academic journals and featured in different national print media (e.g., BBC, Economist). Her empirical research has been conducted in Europe, Asia, and North and South America, and has received UKRI and Leverhulme Trust funding. Prof. Zagefka has supervised several PhD students to completion, and she is open to enquiries from prospective students.



Prof. Zagefka’s service to the field and external activities have included several roles such as

  • past Chief Editorship of the British Journal of Social Psychology;
  • service on the Editorial Board for other publications (e.g., International Journal of Psychology);
  • Chair of a Research Council Grants Assessment Panel at the FWO (Flanders);
  • Panel Membership of various other Research Council Grants Assessment Panels (e.g., at the National Science Centre Poland; at the Latvian Council of Science);
  • an Invited Visiting Professorship (University of Northampton);
  • External Examining on several Undergraduate Programmes (Asia Pacific University at Kuala Lumpur; Goldsmiths University of London; University of Kent);
  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy; and
  • Committee Membership of the BPS Social Psychology Section.

Prof. Zagefka has previously contributed to the psychology department at RHUL in different capacities: Director of an MSc programme in Applied Social Psychology; Director of Ethics; Director of Student Recruitment; Director of Postgraduate Taught Programmes; Director of Teaching and Learning; and Member of the College’s Academic Board. Prof. Zagefka is the incoming Head of Psychology at Royal Holloway University of London (from August 2022).



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