Emile Bruneau, Ph.D.,is a social and cognitive scientist who is director of the Peace and Conflict Neuroscience Lab at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania, and lead scientist at the Beyond Conflict Innovation Lab. His research is focused on better understanding the psychological and cognitive biases that drive intergroup conflict, and critically examining the impact of interventions aimed at decreasing intergroup hostility. Specifically, he focuses on the (lack of) empathy and dehumanization that often characterize intergroup conflicts, and how empathy and humanity can potentially be restored through virtual and media-based encounters with ‘the other’. His recent efforts are focused on hostility towards minority groups (e.g., Islamophobia, anti-Roma bias), and between groups in conflict (e.g., Israelis and Palestinians). His work has received funding from the UN, US Institute for Peace, Soros Foundation, DARPA, ONR, and DRAPER Laboratories.
Boaz Hameiri, Ph.D., is a postdoctoral fellow in the Peace and Conflict Neuroscience Lab at the University of Pennsylvania. His research focuses on intergroup processes, intergroup conflicts, developing psychological interventions that aim to promote better intergroup relations and conflict resolution, and testing these interventions in the lab and in the field on a large scale. In his social psychology Ph.D. dissertation for Tel Aviv University, he developed a new line of psychological interventions based on the “paradoxical thinking” approach and tested it in the context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. In addition, he is interested in studying victimhood as an interpersonal and intergroup phenomenon, and its effects on processes of conflict resolution and reconciliation.
Samantha Moore–Berg, Ph.D., is a postdoctoral fellow in the Peace and Conflict Neuroscience Lab at the University of Pennsylvania. Her research bridges the areas of social psychology, cognitive psychology, and neuroscience to study links between behavior and social–cognitive processes that evolve in intergroup contexts. Her main research interests include designing and implementing prejudice and discrimination reduction interventions; investigating how prejudiced attitudes give way to discriminatory behaviors; and isolating cognitive functions that contribute to or predict prejudiced attitudes and subsequent behaviors. Samantha received her Ph.D. in Social Psychology at Temple University in 2018 and her B.A. in Psychology and Sociology at Florida State University in 2013.
Roman Gallardo received his B.A.in Psychology from Sonoma State University in 2019. Hisprevious research has exploredthe consequences harsh labeling has on dehumanizing outgroups; personality predictors of dehumanization; and racial microaggressions experienced by African American college students. Roman is currently interested in predicting empathy towards stigmatized outgroups and designing conflict resolution interventions between ingroups and outgroups.
Former Lab Manager
AllyPaul graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Swarthmore College with a B.A.in Psychology. Her previous research has looked at the effects of social norms on motivation and short term memory; the role of anticipated regret in decision-making among clinical populations; and use of music-based, mindful meditation during a preoperative informed consent process. She is excited to learn more about the neural underpinnings of ingroup-outgroup biases and how this information can be used to design interventions combating prejudice.
Former Research Assistant
Celia Guillard graduated from the University of Connecticut with degrees in Neuroscience, Political Science, and International Relations. She then interned at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia where she assisted with research during the trialof Ratko Mladić. She subsequently completed her M.Sc. in Cognitive Neuroscience at University College London, where she studied intentional harm and dehumanization during political violence. She is eager to continue investigating psychological mechanisms thatfacilitate political violence.