Dr Hema Preya Selvanathan

Postdoctoral Research Fellow

School of Psychology
Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences
+61 7 336 56411


I was born and raised in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. After completing my PhD in social psychology (with a concentration in the psychology of peace and violence) at the University of Massachusetts Amherst (2019), I moved to the University of Queensland for a postdoctoral research fellowship with Professor Jolanda Jetten as part of her ARC Laureate fellowship (2019-2022). A central theme guiding my work is that both social change and the maintenance of the status quo is often achieved through sustained group-based efforts. To this end, I conduct research around ongoing social and political issues using a combination of quantitative and qualitative methods in laboratory, online, and field settings across different regions of the world. This research is only possible through close collaboration with my mentors, colleagues, and students. My research interests are: social change and intergroup relations; social movements and collective action; intergroup solidarity; intergroup conflict and reconciliation.


  • Doctor of Philosophy, University of Massachusetts
  • Master of Science, University of Massachusetts


  • Selvanathan, Hema Preya and Jetten, Jolanda (2020). From marches to movements: building and sustaining a social movement following collective action. Current Opinion in Psychology, 35, 81-85. doi: 10.1016/j.copsyc.2020.04.004

  • Hässler, Tabea, Ullrich, Johannes, Bernardino, Michelle, Shnabel, Nurit, Laar, Colette Van, Valdenegro, Daniel, Sebben, Simone, Tropp, Linda R., Visintin, Emilio Paolo, González, Roberto, Ditlmann, Ruth K., Abrams, Dominic, Selvanathan, Hema Preya, Brankovic, Marija, Wright, Stephen, von Zimmermann, Jorina, Pasek, Michael, Aydin, Anna Lisa, Žeželj, Iris, Pereira, Adrienne, Lantos, Nóra Anna, Sainz, Mario, Glenz, Andreas, Oberpfalzerová, Hana, Bilewicz, Michal, Kende, Anna, Kuzawinska, Olga, Otten, Sabine, Maloku, Edona, Noor, Masi, Gul, Pelin, Pistella, Jessica, Baiocco, Roberto, Jelic, Margareta, Osin, Evgeny, Bareket, Orly, Biruski, Dinka Corkalo, Cook, Jonathan E., Dawood, Maneeza, Droogendyk, Lisa, Loyo, Angélica Herrera, Kelmendi, Kaltrina and Ugarte, Luiza Mugnol (2020). Erratum: Author Correction: A large-scale test of the link between intergroup contact and support for social change (Nature human behaviour (2020) 4 4 (380-386)). Nature Human Behaviour, 4 (7), 771-771. doi: 10.1038/s41562-020-0915-9

  • Selvanathan, Hema Preya, Lickel, Brian and Dasgupta, Nilanjana (2020). An integrative framework on the impact of allies: how identity‐based needs influence intergroup solidarity and social movements. European Journal of Social Psychology ejsp.2697 doi: 10.1002/ejsp.2697

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  • Doctor Philosophy

  • Doctor Philosophy

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Book Chapter

Journal Article

PhD and MPhil Supervision

Current Supervision

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor