University of St Andrews Professor named Fellow of British Academy

Wednesday 22 July 2015

Professor Stephen Reicher, Professor of Psychology at the University of St Andrews, has been elected to the British Academy.

Professor Reicher is among 42 new Fellows named by the Academy, including leading academics from around the world.

Professor Stephen Reicher, Professor of Psychology

Elected as a world-leading expert in group psychology, Professor Reicher joins the Poet Laureate, Dame Carol Anne Duffy who is named an Honorary Fellow; and Professor Simon Schama of the University of Columbia who is now a Corresponding Fellow.

Professor Reicher’s work particularly focuses on the relationship between social identities and collective mobilisation, with emphasis on topics such as crowd behaviour, nationalism and national identity, leadership and mass social influence, conformity and obedience, and the psychology of tyranny.

He is already a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh and a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences. He is a former editor of the British Journal of Social Psychology, member of the Governing Council of the International Society of Political Psychology, Vice-President of ADRIPS (International French language society of social psychology) and is a scientific consultant to Scientific American Mind.

He has published more than 200 academic articles and chapters, and is the author of nine books, most recently, The New Psychology of Leadership (winner of the International Leadership Association best book award) and a five volume set on leadership.

He has also advised the UK and Scottish governments and his work on crowd dynamics has transformed public order policing in the UK and across much of Europe.

Professor Reicher said: “One of the great paradoxes of academic life is that achievement is always collective, but reward is always individual. In my work, I have always benefitted from wonderful PhD students, collaborators and colleagues. I find it impossible to define where my contribution begins and theirs ends. So, delighted as I am to be given this Fellowship, I see this less as a personal accolade than recognition for our way of doing psychology which is socially engaged, which challenges the idea that human nature limits the worlds we can create, and which focusses on the collective processes which can bring about social change”.

The latest addition of 42 new UK Fellows takes the total number of living Fellows to more than 1000 for the first time.

At its Annual General Meeting on 16 July 2015, the Academy welcomed the new Fellows whose research areas span the full range of the subject areas across the humanities and social sciences, from history to psychology, economics to law, literature to philosophy and languages to archaeology.

Lord Stern, President of the British Academy, said: “This year we have the honour of once again welcoming the finest researchers and scholars into our Fellowship. Elected from across the UK and world for their distinction in the humanities and social sciences, they represent an unrivalled resource of expertise and knowledge. Our Fellows play a vital role in the work of the Academy; encouraging younger researchers, engaging in public discussion of the great issues and ideas of our time, and contributing to policy reports. Their collective work and expertise are testament to why research in the humanities and social sciences is vital for our understanding of the world and humanity.”

Notes to news editors 

A full list of Fellows is available from the British Academy press office  at [email protected] or 020 7969 5227.

Issued by the University of St Andrews Communications Office, contactable on 01334 462530 or [email protected].

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