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Jenny Paterson

01642 384490
Job title:
Senior Lecturer in Psychology
School of Social Sciences, Humanities & Law
Social Sciences, Humanities & Law research

About Jenny Paterson

In 2006, I graduated summa cum laude with a BSc in Psychology from Berry College, USA. From there, I went on to complete my Masters in Social Psychology investigating the impact of socio-economic status on individuals' romantic beliefs under the supervision of Prof Elaine Hatfield at the University of Hawaii at Manoa (2008). Upon returning to England, I became a Research Assistant to Prof Rhiannon Turner at the University of Leeds where we examined prejudice reduction strategies. Following this, I was offered a University Research Scholarship to complete my PhD under the supervision of Prof Turner and Prof Mark Conner examining the intergroup aspects of interracial romantic relationships at the University of Leeds (2013). In more recent years, I have worked at the University of Sussex alongside Prof Rupert Brown and Prof Mark Walters on the Sussex Hate Crime Project investigating the community impacts of hate crimes.

Research interests

My general research interests lie in Social Psychology with a specific focus on intergroup relations, the effects of prejudice, and prejudice reduction strategies. Such interests have led me to examine the community impacts of hate crime against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans communities and Muslim communities. I also seek to understand how such prejudice can be reduced by investigating the impacts and psychological mechanisms of intergroup contact and multiple categorisation techniques.
In addition, I am interested in understanding the more interpersonal aspects of prejudice, particularly in terms of its effects on people's romantic relationships and their perceptions of others' romantic relationships.

Research projects & external funding

I currently assist with 'Hatemeter', a European-wide project funded by the European Commission which attempts to prevent and tackle online Islamophobia.

External research collaborations

I continue to work with Prof Rupert Brown and Prof Mark Walters (University of Sussex) on the Sussex Hate Crime Project. I also collaborate with Prof Rhiannon Turner (Queen's University Belfast) and Prof Gordon Hodson (Brock University) investigating the effects of intergroup romantic relationships on individuals' attitudes towards different races and nationalities. In working with Hatemeter, I collaborate with Dr Elisa Martini (University of Trento) and Dr Stefano Bonino. 

Learning and teaching interests

I currently have the pleasure of being the module leader and lecturer on the Applications of Psychology and the Underpinning Forensic Psychology first year modules. I also supervise Masters students and final year undergraduate students.


Walters, M. A., Paterson, J. L., Brown, R., & McDonnell, L. (2017). ‘Hate crimes against transgender people: Assessing the impacts on emotions, behaviors and attitudes towards criminal justice agencies’. Journal of Interpersonal Violence. DOI: 10.1177/0886260517715026.

Paterson, J. L., Cameron, L., & Turner, R. N. (2017). Extended contact. In F. Moghaddam (Ed.), The SAGE Encyclopaedia of Political Behaviour. Sage Publications.

Brown, R., & Paterson, J. L. (2016). ‘Indirect contact and prejudice reduction: Limits and possibilities’. Current Opinion in Psychology, 11, 20-24. DOI: 10.1016/j.copsyc.2016.03.005.

Paterson, J. L., Turner, R. N., & Conner, M. T. (2015). ‘Extended contact through cross-group romantic relationships’. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 45(9), 489-497. DOI: 10.1111/jasp.12314