The University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NZ, T +44 (0)1227 764000
Professor Robbie Sutton
Professor of Social Psychology
I am interested in the social psychology of justice and (in)equality, including:
- Just-world beliefs
These refer to the extent to which people believe they, and others, receive the treatment and life outcomes they deserve. These are related to psychological health, functioning, and a raft of social attitudes (for more information, see Hafer & Sutton, 2014; Sutton & Douglas, 2005; Sutton & Winnard, 2007; Sutton et al., 2008; Wu et al., 2013 in my publication list).
- Conspiracy beliefs
I collaborate with Karen Douglas on conspiracy belief (see Douglas & Sutton, 2008, 2011, Sutton & Douglas, 2014. Our work examines the psychological mechanisms that cause people to entertain such beliefs.
- Immanent justice reasoning
I collaborate with Mitch Callan (University of Essex) on the why people tend to perceive that a person's misfortune must be attributable to some prior misdeed of theirs, even when the two cannot be related (Callan et al., 2010, 2013, 2014).
- Gender, sexism and inequality
I have studied several aspects of gender inequality, including gendered fear of crime (Sutton & Farrall, 2005, 2008; Sutton, Robinson & Farrall, 2011), sexist intrusions on the autonomy of women during pregnancy (Murphy et al., 2011; Sutton, Douglas, & McClellan, 2011), and gender inequality in educational attainment (Hartley & Sutton, 2013).
I am interested in social communicative approaches to these and other questions, such as intergroup relations (e.g., Douglas & Sutton, 2003, 2010; Sutton, Elder & Douglas, 2006). A related interest is in environmental psychology.
- Hartley, B.L., & Sutton, R.M. (2013). A stereotype threat account of boys’ academic underachievement. Child Development, 84, 1716-1733.
- Jeffries, C.H., Hornsey, M.J., Sutton, R.M., Douglas, K.M., & Bain, P. (2012). The David and Goliath principle: Cultural ideological and attitudinal underpinnings of the normative protection of low-status groups from criticism. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 38, 1053-1065.
- Callan, M.J., Sutton, R.M., & Dovale, C. (2010). When deserving translates into causing: The effect of cognitive load on immanent justice reasoning. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 46, 1097-1100.
- Sutton, R. M., Douglas, K. M., Wilkin, K., 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, 38, 528-541.