Social Psychology Network

Maintained by Scott Plous, Wesleyan University

Jojanneke van der Toorn

Jojanneke van der Toorn

  • Media Contact
  • SPN Mentor

I am an assistant professor in the Department of Social, Health & Organizational Psychology at Utrecht University in the Netherlands.

I am interested in how basic processes of motivation play out at individual, interpersonal, and system (or societal) levels of analysis. My research mainly focuses on the social psychological mechanisms involved in how, why, and when people resist, provide support for, or directly engage in social change. The central theoretical framework I apply in answering these questions is that of system justification theory, which posits that people are not only motivated to feel good about themselves and the groups to which they belong, but also strive to defend and justify existing structural arrangements, including societal inequalities.

I have studied individuals’ desires to change (vs. maintain) the status quo from a variety of angles, such as (1) the influence of structural factors, (2) the underlying motivational forces, and (3) the consequences for the self and society. In all of my research programs, a strong training in statistics has provided me with sophisticated tools for carrying out and interpreting complex studies of psychological processes.

Primary Interests:

  • Applied Social Psychology
  • Attitudes and Beliefs
  • Ethics and Morality
  • Gender Psychology
  • Group Processes
  • Intergroup Relations
  • Life Satisfaction, Well-Being
  • Motivation, Goal Setting
  • Organizational Behavior
  • Political Psychology
  • Prejudice and Stereotyping
  • Sexuality, Sexual Orientation

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Book Chapters and Other Publications

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Jojanneke van der Toorn
Heidelberglaan 1
3584CS Utrecht
The Netherlands

  • Phone: +31 30 253 4823

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