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Personal profile

Research interests


Dr. Smith is a Senior Lecturer in Social Psychology and Deputy Head of Department at the Department of Psychology. She is a co-investigator of the Centre for Evidence and Research on Security Threats (CREST) https://crestresearch.ac.uk, and is joint Chief Editor of the British Journal of Social Psychology. She received her PhD in Social Psychology from the University of Exeter in 2008, and has published widely over the past 10 years on the psychology underlying social movements, collective action, and socialization. As a social and organizational psychologist, she has an established program of research examining how polarized groups emerge and evolve through intra- and intergroup interactions (both online and offline), and the implications of these processes for behavior. Dr Smith's research on polarization and radicalization has been funded by three major UK-based research councils and in 2016 she won a mid-career Fellowship from the British Academy to study the psychology of online radicalization.


Education/Academic qualification

Social psychology, Doctor of Philosophy, University of Exeter

Social and organisational psychology, Master in Science, University of Exeter

Psychology, Bachelor of Science, University of Exeter

External positions

Chief Editor, British Journal of Social Psychology


  • psychology
  • Social identity
  • Radicalization
  • Social change
  • Social Media Analytics
  • Social Psychology

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Laura G. E. Smith is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

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Social Identification Medicine & Life Sciences
Social Change Medicine & Life Sciences
Consensus Medicine & Life Sciences
Refugees Medicine & Life Sciences
social change Social Sciences
Social Movements Social Sciences
Psychology Medicine & Life Sciences
Self Concept Medicine & Life Sciences

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Projects 2016 2020

Guarded talk

Smith, L. G. E.

Government Department


Project: Central government, health and local authorities

Predicting Online Radicalisation

Smith, L. G. E. & Barnett, J.



Project: Research council

Social sciences
Computer science
Big data

Research Output 2009 2019

4 Downloads (Pure)

Advancing the social psychology of rapid societal change

Smith, L., Livingstone, A. & Thomas, E., 1 Jan 2019, In : British Journal of Social Psychology. 58, 1, p. 33-44 12 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
2 Citations (Scopus)
18 Downloads (Pure)

Reaching consensus promotes the internalization of commitment to social change

Thomas, E. F., McGarty, C., Stuart, A., Smith, L. G. E. & Bourgeois, L., 1 Aug 2019, In : Group Processes and Intergroup Relations. 22, 5, p. 615-630 16 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
Social Change
Developing countries
Climate change
Potable water

The need to re-focus on the group as the site of radicalization

Smith, L. G. E., Blackwood, L. & Thomas, E. F., 28 Aug 2019, (Accepted/In press) In : Perspectives on Psychological Science. p. 1-68 68 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
10 Citations (Scopus)
6 Downloads (Pure)

When and how social movements mobilize action within and across nations to promote solidarity with refugees

Thomas, E. F., Smith, L. G. E., McGarty, C., Reese, G., Kende, A., Bliuc, A-M., Curtin, N. & Spears, R., 1 Mar 2019, In : European Journal of Social Psychology. 49, 2, p. 213-229 17 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
12 Citations (Scopus)
41 Downloads (Pure)

After Aylan Kurdi: How Tweeting about Death, Threat, and Harm Predict Increased Expressions of Solidarity with Refugees over Time

Smith, L., McGarty, C. & Thomas, E., 1 Apr 2018, In : Psychological Science. 29, 4, p. 623-634 12 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
Social Change
Social Media


An investigation into the reciprocal relationship between gender and careers

Author: Mcatamney, K., 23 Nov 2016

Supervisor: Smith, L. (Supervisor) & Keogh, E. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisPhD


Cultural Differences in the Effects of Workspace Personalisation on Individual and Organisational Outcomes

Author: Cao, Y., 19 Jun 2019

Supervisor: Weyman, A. (Supervisor), Blackwood, L. (Supervisor) & Smith, L. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisMPhil