Sofia Stathi Faculty of Education & Health

Dr Sofia Stathi BSc, PGCHE, PhD

Sofia Stathi

Dr Sofia Stathi
BSc, PGCHE, PhD

Senior Lecturer, Psychology

Department of Psychology, Social Work & Counselling

Faculty of Education and Health

Dr Sofia Stathi is a Senior Lecturer of Psychology in the Department of Psychology, Social Work & Counselling at the University of Greenwich. Sofia obtained a BSc Psychology from the University of Crete, Greece and then a PhD from the University of Birmingham, UK. She joined the University of Greenwich as Senior Lecturer in 2011. Prior to this, Sofia was a post-doctoral researcher and then Lecturer at the University of Kent. Sofia teaches social psychology, social cognition, and cross-cultural psychology.

Posts held previously:

  • 2008-11, University of Kent, Lectureship
  • 2007-08, University of Kent, Postdoctoral Research Associate
  • Senior Lecturer of Psychology, Department of Psychology, Social Work & Counselling
  • Chair of Research Ethics Panel, Department of Psychology, Social Work and Counselling
  • Co-Chair, Faculty of Education and Health Research Ethics Committee
  • Faculty of Education and Health Representative in the University Research Ethics Committee

PhD Supervisor:

  • Melissa Pavetich (first supervisor)
  • Claudia Roscini (first supervisor)
  • Frantiska Halaszova (second supervisor)
  • Jane Matonhodze (second supervisor)
    • 2016, Allocation of Vice-Chancellor PhD Scholarship, University of Greenwich
    • 2012, University of Greenwich Early Career Research Excellence Award
    • 2012, Allocation of Vice-Chancellor PhD Scholarship, University of Greenwich

Sofia is a social psychologist, exploring primarily processes that relate to intergroup relations. Sofia's research focuses on prejudice and prejudice-reduction among majority and minority groups via direct and indirect intergroup contact. Furthermore, Sofia's research examines social categorisation and social identity; multiculturalism and acculturation processes; collective action; social exclusion.

Funded research projects

  • 2014, FAR University of Modena and Reggio Emilia Grant: Università di Modena e Reggio Emilia. Direct and indirect intergroup contact interventions for primary and secondary school children
  • 2014, ESRC Seminar Series, Youth mental health and well-being
  • 2014, Research and Enterprise Investment Programme Grant: University of Greenwich. Identity threats in the UK and Europe: Understanding the underlying processes and testing solutions
  • 2010, Small Research Grant: British Academy. Raising awareness and reducing the social stigma of the homeless
  • 2010, Cátedra Real Madrid – UEM. Attitudes of future teachers of physical education on the inclusion of the students with incapacity in the classes of physical education: a comparative study between Spain and the United Kingdom
  • 2009, Study visit grant: European Association for Social Psychology. Enhancing bi-cultural identity integration: the role of intercultural contact
  • 2009, Small Research Grant: British Academy. Imaginary contact: developing and evaluating a new prejudice-reduction intervention for schools

Stathi, S., Husnu, S. and Pendleton, S. (2017). Intergroup contact and contact norms as predictors of post-conflict forgiveness. Group Dynamics: Theory, Research, and Practice, 21, pp. 20-39. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/gdn0000060

Vezzali, L. and Stathi, S. (2017). Intergroup contact theory: Recent developments and future directions. London, England/New York, NY: Routledge.

Vezzali, L. and Stathi, S. (2017). The extended intergroup contact hypothesis: State of the art and future developments. In L. Vezzali & S. Stathi (Eds.), Intergroup contact theory: Recent developments and future directions. London, England/New York, NY: Routledge.

De Carvalho-Freitas, M. N. and Stathi, S. (2017). Reducing Workplace Bias toward People with Disabilities with the Use of Imagined Contact. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 47, pp. 256-266. doi: 10.1111/jasp.12435

Gravani, M., Soureti, A. and Stathi, S. (2017). Using Nostalgia to Reduce Prejudice toward Immigrants. European Journal of Social Psychology. doi: 10.1002/ejsp.2294

Di Bernardo, G. A., Vezzali, L., Stathi, S., Cadamuro, A. and Cortesi, L. (2017). Vicarious, extended and imagined intergroup contact: A review of interventions based on indirect contact strategies applied in educational settings. Testing, Psychometrics, Methodology in Applied Psychology, 24, pp. 3-21. doi:10.4473/TPM24.1.1

Stathi, S. and Roscini, C. (2016). Identity processes and acculturation in multicultural contexts. In S. McKeown, R. Haji, & N. Ferguson (Eds.), Understanding Peace and Conflict Through Social Identity Theory: Contemporary and World-Wide Perspectives. UK: Springer.

Vezzali, L., Gocłowska, G. A., Crisp, R. J. and Stathi, S. (2016). On the relationship between cultural diversity and creativity in education: The moderating role of communal versus divisional mindset. Thinking Skills and Creativity, 21, pp. 152-157.

Vezzali, L., Stathi, S., Crisp, R. J., Giovannini, D, Capozza, D. and Gaertner, S. L. (2015). Imagined intergroup contact and common ingroup identity: An integrative approach. Social Psychology, 46, pp. 264-276.

Vezzali, L., Stathi, S., Giovannini, D., Capozza, D. and Visintin E. P. (2015). 'And the best essay is…': Extended contact and cross-group friendships at school. British Journal of Social Psychology, (54)4, pp. 601-615.

Vezzali, L., Stathi, S., Capozza, D., Giovannini, D. and Trifiletti, E. (2015). The Greatest Magic of Harry Potter: Reducing Prejudice. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 45, pp. 105-121.

Vezzali, L., Crisp, R. J., Stathi, S. and Giovannini, D. (2015). Imagined intergroup contact facilitates intercultural communication for college students on academic exchange programs. Group Processes and Intergroup Relations, 18, pp. 66-75. 

Stathi, S., Cameron, L., Hartley, B. and Bradford, S. (2014). Imagined Contact as a Prejudice-Reduction Intervention in Schools: The Underlying Role of Similarity and Attitudes. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 44, pp. 536-546. 

Vezzali, L., Crisp, R. J., Stathi, S. and Giovannini, D. (2013). The affective consequences of imagined contact: A review and some suggestions for future research. Testing, Psychometrics, Methodology in Applied Psychology, 20, pp. 343-363.

Stathi, S., Crisp, R. J., Turner, R. N., West, K. and Birtel, M. (2012). Using mental imagery to promote positive intergroup relations. In: D.W. Russel, and C.A. Russel, (eds.) The psychology of prejudice: Interdisciplinary perspectives on contemporary issues. Nova, pp. 235-250.

Stathi, S., Tsantila, K. and Crisp, R. J. (2012). Imagining intergroup contact can combat mental health stigma by reducing anxiety, avoidance and negative stereotyping. The Journal of Social Psychology, 152, pp. 746-757.

Vezzali, L., Stathi, S. and Giovannini, D. (2012). Indirect contact through book reading: Improving adolescents' attitudes and behavioral intentions toward immigrants. Psychology in the Schools, 49, pp. 148-162.

Vezzali, L., Capozza, D., Giovannini, D. and Stathi, S. (2012). Improving implicit and explicit intergroup attitudes using imagined contact: An experimental intervention with elementary school children. Group Processes and Intergroup Relations, 15, pp. 203-212.

Vezzali, L., Capozza, D., Stathi, S. and Giovannini, D. (2012). Increasing outgroup trust, reducing infrahumanization, and enhancing future contact intentions via imagined intergroup contact. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 48, pp. 437-440.

Stathi, S., Crisp, R. J. and Hogg, M. (2011). Imagining intergroup contact enables member-to-group generalization. Group Dynamics: Theory, Research, and Practice, 15, pp. 275-284.

Crisp, R. J., Husnu, S., Meleady, R., Stathi, S. and Turner, R. N. (2010). From imagery to intention: A dual-route model of imagined contact effects. European Review of Social Psychology, 21, pp. 188-236.

Stathi, S. and Crisp, R. J. (2010). Intergroup contact and the projection of positivity. International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 34, pp. 580-591.

Douglas, K. M., Sutton, R. M. and Stathi, S. (2010). Why I am less persuaded than you: People's intuitive understanding of the psychology of persuasion. Social Influence, 5, pp. 133-148.

Crisp, R. J. and Stathi, S. (2009). Allport. In: J.M. Levine, and M.A. Hogg, (eds.) Encyclopedia of Group Processes and Intergroup Relations. Thousand Oakes: Sage.

Stathi, S. and Crisp, R. J. (2009). Teaching and learning guide for: Imagined intergroup contact: Theory, paradigm, and practice. Social and Personality Psychology Compass, 3, pp. 1129-1134.

Stathi, S. and Crisp, R. J. (2008). Imagining intergroup contact promotes projection to outgroups. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 44, pp. 943-957.

Crisp, R. J., Stathi, S., Turner, R. N. & Husnu, S. (2008). Imagined intergroup contact: Theory, paradigm, and practice. Social and Personality Psychology Compass, 2, pp. 1-18.

Sutton, R. M., Douglas, K. M., Wilkin, K. J., Elder, T. J., Cole, J. M. & Stathi, S. (2008). Justice for whom, exactly? Beliefs in justice for the self and various others. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 34, pp. 528-541.

Stathi, S., Husnu, S. and Pendleton, S. (2017). Intergroup contact and contact norms as predictors of post-conflict forgiveness. Group Dynamics: Theory, Research, and Practice, 21, pp. 20-39. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/gdn0000060

Vezzali, L. and Stathi, S. (2017). Intergroup contact theory: Recent developments and future directions. London, England/New York, NY: Routledge.

Vezzali, L. and Stathi, S. (2017). The extended intergroup contact hypothesis: State of the art and future developments. In L. Vezzali & S. Stathi (Eds.), Intergroup contact theory: Recent developments and future directions. London, England/New York, NY: Routledge.

De Carvalho-Freitas, M. N. and Stathi, S. (2017). Reducing Workplace Bias toward People with Disabilities with the Use of Imagined Contact. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 47, pp. 256-266. doi: 10.1111/jasp.12435

Gravani, M., Soureti, A. and Stathi, S. (2017). Using Nostalgia to Reduce Prejudice toward Immigrants. European Journal of Social Psychology. doi: 10.1002/ejsp.2294

Di Bernardo, G. A., Vezzali, L., Stathi, S., Cadamuro, A. and Cortesi, L. (2017). Vicarious, extended and imagined intergroup contact: A review of interventions based on indirect contact strategies applied in educational settings. Testing, Psychometrics, Methodology in Applied Psychology, 24, pp. 3-21. doi:10.4473/TPM24.1.1

Stathi, S. and Roscini, C. (2016). Identity processes and acculturation in multicultural contexts. In S. McKeown, R. Haji, & N. Ferguson (Eds.), Understanding Peace and Conflict Through Social Identity Theory: Contemporary and World-Wide Perspectives. UK: Springer.

Vezzali, L., Gocłowska, G. A., Crisp, R. J. and Stathi, S. (2016). On the relationship between cultural diversity and creativity in education: The moderating role of communal versus divisional mindset. Thinking Skills and Creativity, 21, pp. 152-157.

Browse our publications database

Stathi, S., Pendleton, S., & Vezzali, L. Do they want contact?: Perceived outgroup -and ingroup- desire for contact and positive interactions. 18th General Meeting of the European Association for Social Psychology, Granada, 2017.

Stathi, S., Roscini, C., & Haji, R. Social categorisation, identity and acculturation: Processes underlying peace and conflict between groups. 18th General Meeting of the European Association for Social Psychology, Granada, 2017.

Stathi, S., Helland, E., & Vezzali, L. Religiosity and moral foundations as predictors of attitudes toward homosexuality. Ex Nihilo Zero Conference, European Academy of Religion, Bologna. 2017.

Haji, R., McKeown, S., Stathi, S., & Frequin, M. Turning a Frown Upside Down: Imagined Shared Laugh Increases Implicit and Explicit Liking. 1st International Symposium of Intergroup Communication, Thessaloniki, 2017.

Waldzus, S., & Stathi, S. This is what you want...This is what you get. Relational discrepancies as predictors of non-normative protest. Annual Scientific Meeting of the International Society of Political Psychology, Edinburgh, 2017.

Stathi, S. Workshop on Intergroup Contact Among Children and Young People: Current Issues and Future Directions. British Psychological Society Social and Developmental Psychology Section, Manchester, 2015

Pendleton, S., Stathi, S. and Husnu, S. (2015). Intergroup Contact, Ingroup Contact Norms and Post-Conflict Forgiveness. In: Annual British Psychological Society Conference. Liverpool.

Stathi, S. and Tamplin-Wilson, J (2015). Alterophobia: Attitudes Towards Individuals From Alternative Subcultures and a Comparison of Mental Imagery Prejudice-Reduction Paradigms. In: Annual Conference of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology. Long Beach.

Stathi, S. and Smith, L. (2014). A recipe for social harmony: Social ideologies, prejudice and tolerance in volunteers with stigmatized groups. In: 17th General Meeting of the European Association of Social Psychology. Amsterdam.

Husnu, S. and Stathi, S. (2014). Positive ingroup contact norms increase support for reparation policies via forgiveness. In: 17th General Meeting of the European Association of Social Psychology. Amsterdam.

Stathi, S. (2013). Applying imagined contact as a school-based intervention. In: British Psychological Society Social Psychology Section. Exeter.

Stathi, S. (2013). Reducing prejudice toward stigmatized groups via mental imagery: Imagined contact versus perspective-taking. In: 14th Annual Conference of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology. New Orleans.

Vezzali, L., Stathi, S., Giovannini, D. and Davolio, G. (2012). Migliorare le relazioniintergruppileggendo Harry Potter [Improving intergroup relations by reading Harry Potter]. In: 11th National Congress of the Italian Psychological Association, Section of Social Psychology. Chieti, Italy.

Giovannini, D., Capozza, D., Vezzali, L., Stathi, S., Davolio, G. and De ZorziPoggioli, L. (2012). Ridurrel'infraumanizzazione con ilcontattoimmaginato [Reducing infrahumanization with immagine contact]. In: 11th National Congress of the Italian Psychological Association, Section of Social Psychology. Chieti, Italy.

Pappous, A., Ries, F., Stathi, S., Kouli, O., Elbe, A.-M., Sanchez, X. and Hatzigeorgiadis, A. (2012). Improving intergroup relations in young athletes from different ethnic and cultural backgrounds: towards the development of an intervention program. In: 17th annual congress of the European College of Sports Science. Bruges.

Stathi, S. and Crisp, R. J. (2012). Intergroup contact can compensate threatened needs following social exclusion. In: 13th Annual Conference of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology. San Diego, CA.

Stathi, S. and Crisp, R. J. (2011). Social contact can compensate for threatened needs following an episode of ostracism. In: 16th General Meeting of the European Association for Social Psychology. Stockholm.

Vezzali, L., Giovannini, D., Capozza, D., Stathi, S. and Salzillo, G. (2011). Contattoimmaginato e riduzione del pregiudizio a scuola [Imagined contact and prejudice reduction at school]. Racism, ethnic prejudice and xenofobia in Italy. In: International meeting-Theoretical and research perspectives. Torino, Italy.

Stathi, S. (2010). Internationalising the Curriculum. In: The social world of International students. University of Kent: Unit for the Enhancement of Learning and Teaching.

Stathi, S. and Crisp, R. J. (2010). Imagined intergroup contact: Theory, paradigm, and practice. In: British Psychological Society Annual Conference. Stratford-upon-Avon.

Stathi, S. and Cameron, L. (2010). Imaginary contact: Developing and evaluating a new prejudice-reduction intervention for schools. In: 11th Annual Conference of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology. Las Vegas, NV.

Vezzali, L., Stathi, S. and Giovannini, D. (2010). Improving Italian pupils' attitudes toward immigrants: Book reading as a new dimension of extended contact. In: 11th Annual Conference of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology. Las Vegas, NV.

Cameron, L., Blake, B. and Stathi, S. (2009). 'Big picture story-building'©: Evaluating a new imaginary contact intervention for children. In: British Psychological Society Social Psychology Section. Sheffield.

Stathi, S., Crisp, R. J. and Hogg, M. (2009). Increasing confidence about future interactions via imagined contact. In: 12th Pan-Hellenic conference for Psychological Research (12ο ΠανελλήνιοΣυνέδριοΨυχολογικήςΈρευνας). ELPSE. Volos, Greece.

Stathi, S., Crisp, R. J. and Hogg, M. (2009). Getting ready for contact: The effects of mentally simulating intergroup interactions on contact self-efficacy. In: 10th Annual Conference of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology. Tampa, FL.

Stathi, S. and Crisp, R. J. (2008). Reducing prejudice via imagined contact. In: Small Group Meeting on Intergroup Contact. Marburg: EAESP.

Stathi, S., Crisp, R. J. and Hogg, M. (2008). Reducing intergroup bias via imagined contact: The role of projection. In: 15th General meeting of European Association of Experimental Social Psychology. Croatia.

Stathi, S., Pendleton, S., & Vezzali, L. Do they want contact?: Perceived outgroup -and ingroup- desire for contact and positive interactions. 18th General Meeting of the European Association for Social Psychology, Granada, 2017.

Stathi, S., Roscini, C., & Haji, R. Social categorisation, identity and acculturation: Processes underlying peace and conflict between groups. 18th General Meeting of the European Association for Social Psychology, Granada, 2017.

Stathi, S., Helland, E., & Vezzali, L. Religiosity and moral foundations as predictors of attitudes toward homosexuality. Ex Nihilo Zero Conference, European Academy of Religion, Bologna. 2017.

Haji, R., McKeown, S., Stathi, S., & Frequin, M. Turning a Frown Upside Down: Imagined Shared Laugh Increases Implicit and Explicit Liking. 1st International Symposium of Intergroup Communication, Thessaloniki, 2017.

Waldzus, S., & Stathi, S. This is what you want...This is what you get. Relational discrepancies as predictors of non-normative protest. Annual Scientific Meeting of the International Society of Political Psychology, Edinburgh, 2017.

Browse our publications database