Project Leader: Kirsty Klipp

Full title: A study of interactional factors that affect leadership choices in evolving minimal group situations: the role of in-group favouritism, wealth accumulation, fairness, and trust

Traditional studies of leadership focus on individual differences such as personality and cognition as predictors of leader behaviour. This approach fails to take into account the social aspect of leadership, and ignores the role of the leader-follower interaction that takes place (Emery, Calvard & Pierce, 2013). Social psychologists have developed a more socially driven theory of the leadership phenomenon (The New Psychology of Leadership), which take into account the leaders role in developing and instilling social identity in followers, in interaction with them (Haslam, Reicher & Platow, 2011). These leaders play an emergent role in society, and are often not predefined from the outset. The VIAPPL (see platform was used to investigate how leadership emerged during interaction, through social behaviours such as ingroup favouritism, fairness, selfishness and communication in a virtual environment. Upon ethical approval data will be collected and analysed in R, using multilevel modelling.


Emery, C., Calvard, T. S., & Pierce, M. E. (2013). Leadership as an emergent group process: A social network study of personality and leadership. Group Processes and Intergroup Relations, 16(1), 28-45.

Haslam, S. A., Reicher, S. D., & Platow, M. J. (2011). The New Psychology of Leadership: Identity, Influence and Power. New York, New York: Psychology Press.