Thursday, February 11, 2016

Culture & Psychology Summer School in Nagoya, Japan

We are super-excited to announce all the details for the next IACCP Culture & Psychology Summer School. The Culture & Psychology School is open to students at PhD and MSc level and is sponsored by the International Association for Cross-Cultural Psychology (IACCP). The goal is to provide specialized training by experts in topics of importance and relevance for studying psychology and culture in context.  In addition to its educational benefits, the programme is designed to facilitate cross-cultural contact and understanding among future academic leaders and to broaden their academic vision.  We really look forward in bringing bright minds from all corners of the world together and help them develop new research ideas and collaborations. The Culture & Psychology School is run in association with the 23rd IACCP conference to take place in Nagoya, Japan. 
A project presentation during the 2012 Stellenbosch Culture & Psychology School

There have been numerous changes based on the feedback and suggestions that we received after the last one in Reims, France. We are super-excited about the line-up and new programme. Here is an overview of the new programme, the stream leaders and content.

The new programme

We have received a lot of feedback and we have remodeled how we plan to run it. The major difference this year is that we have more methods. You will be able to choose both a content stream and a method stream. On the first day after some introduction and overview, you will be working with people in your content stream. On the second day, you can then choose one of three method streams and work hands-on under the guidance of experts. On the third day, you rejoin your content stream and you will integrate your new methods learned to your content area of study.

To make this work, we will expect that you do some prep work before coming to Nagoya. The stream leaders will provide some reading lists and tasks for you to complete before you arrive in Nagoya to get everyone up to speed with basics. Think of it as a mini-online course to help you get familiar with some of the material to make the most of your learning experience. We will facilitate this as best as possible and we are confident that you will enjoy this opportunity to interact online with your stream colleagues.  

Here are the stream leaders and their content and methods sections:

Cristine Legare

Cristine is a cognitive scientist who studies the ontogeny of cultural learning. She examines the interplay of the universal human mind and the variations of human culture to address questions about cognitive and cultural evolution. Her research and training reflect her commitment to an interdisciplinary approach to the study of cognitive development. Cristine draws on insights from cognitive, cultural, developmental, educational, and evolutionary psychology as well as cognitive and evolutionary anthropology and philosophy, with the aim of facilitating cross-fertilization within and across these disciplines. Her website can be found here

Content Stream: Cognition in Cultural Context

Human cross-cultural variation is unique among all animals in both its extent and structural complexity. Cultural variability is one of our species’ most distinctive features, yet the vast majority of psychological research continues to examine a population that is unrepresentative of human culture globally and historically—those from Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich, and Democratic (WEIRD) backgrounds. Cristine proposes that cultural diversity is inextricably tied to childhood. The human capacity for cultural variability within and between groups must be ontologically prepared by a set of characteristics that enable, structure, and stabilize group-specific cultural information much beyond anything that has been observed in other primates. She will discuss how the capacity to learn, create, and transmit culture increases our understanding of the cognitive and cultural evolution of our species. Cristine will describe how my experimental and ethnographic research integrates theory and methodology from cognitive and evolutionary anthropology, psychology, and philosophy to examine the co-construction of cognition and culture. She will also provide an overview of research conducted at field sites in southern Africa, the U.S., Brazil, and Vanuatu (a Melanesian archipelago).

Methods Stream: From Ethnography to Experiments and Back Again

Cristine conducts mixed-methodological, cross-cultural research to examine cognition in context. She will discuss how she “mines ethnography” to inform her experimental research and the ways in which experimental research can be used to test hypotheses about the cognitive psychological underpinnings of cultural beliefs and practices. Cristine will also discuss best practice for elevating the state-of-the-science in cross-cultural research as well as strategies for publishing interdisciplinary research.

Matt Easterbrook

Matt is part of the Social and Applied Psychology Research Group at the University of Sussex, UK, where he researches and lectures on the psychology of inequality.  His research investigates how selves and identities are influenced by different social structures, cultural orientations, and group memberships, and the consequences of these things for personal well-being, trust, motivation, and socio-political outcomes.  His research often uses multilevel and longitudinal study designs and advanced statistical analyses to investigate these issues. His website is here.

Content stream: The self and social inequality 

Against a backdrop of unprecedented and rising levels of inequality across the world, this stream will cover contemporary social psychological theories of inequality and social class.  We will begin by reviewing the broad consequences of inequality for nations and individuals, before discussing the pivotal role of the self as the explanatory nexus between structural inequality and individual characteristics.

Method stream: Multilevel modelling

This stream will begin with a discussion of the research designs that give rise to multilevel data, and why multilevel modelling of nested data is important and useful.  We will then cover how to manage and set up multilevel data in SPSS, and how to import, run and understand different multilevel models using HLM.  

Nicolas Geeraert

Nicolas is a senior lecturer in Psychology at the University of Essex (UK). He trained as a social psychologist (PhD, 2004, Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium) looking at stereotypes and attribution theory. His current research interests are in cross-cultural psychology and acculturation. He has extensive experience in conducting longitudinal projects which he has used in a number of acculturation projects. His website is here.

This is Nicolas one or two weeks ago ;)

Content stream: Acculturation & intercultural contact

Intercultural contact leads to challenges and changes. This stream will explore how acculturation unfolds as a process requiring the acculturating individual to copes with cultural stressors and cognitively organize their heritage and settlement cultures. We will discuss how acculturation takes place within the ecological context of families, institutions, and society.

Methods stream: Longitudinal methods

Longitudinal research is an increasingly popular tool for cross-cultural researchers. This workshop will explore the strengths and advantages of longitudinal research and how to practical set-up a longitudinal study in terms of design, participant management, data preparation, etc. Different methods to analyse longitudinal data will also be discussed. 

Endorsement by Previous Participants

Ceren Gunsoy

I attended the IACCP summer school in Reims, France, as a third year PhD student at Iowa State University. It was a great experience! Not only the topic stream that I was part of but also the talks, discussions, and social activities were very informative, thought-provoking, and fun. On top of that I met great people and am still in touch with them. I strongly recommend this program!

Colin Scott

The 2014 Summer School in Reims, France, was a fantastic opportunity to connect with researchers interested in a range of topics in cross-cultural psychology.  Seminars with leaders in the field offered a hands-on opportunity to build new collaborations while getting critical and constructive feedback from faculty and students on our own work.


The cost for the summer school will be 200 Euro for participants from high-income countries (as per IACCP fee structure) and 150 Euro for participants from low income countries. The fee includes accommodation, welcome dinner, lunches and coffee breaks. This is pretty damn good value for a three full day workshop with world leaders in the field of psychology and culture, providing you with cutting edge skills and material. 

The Schedule

March 20: Deadline for applications
April 3: Decisions on applications
April 4: Work in online study groups commences
June 20: Submitting initial research ideas to stream leaders

July 26- 30: Culture & Psychology School in Nagoya Hill
July 26 evening – arrival at Nagoya hill station, general welcome and get to know each other
July 27– Introduction & work in content streams
July 28– work in methods streams
July 29 morning – we bring content and methods back together, discussion of research ideas and plans
July 29 afternoon – sharing experiences by stream leaders on how to publish cultural research
July 30 – transfer to Nagoya.

July 30 – Aug 3: IACCP conference in Nagoya

Accommodation & Logistics

The school will take place in a mountain retreat two hours away from Nagoya. It will be a fascinating cultural experience since we are going to be in a small community off the beaten track in a more traditional Japanese environment. All sleeping places are shared and we will sleep on futons. Please bring your own toiletries and towels be prepared to share a communal space. There will be NO towels available and only shared shower facilities. It is a traditional setting and we only have one hour per day in the evening when you can take a shower. I realize that this may be unusual or inconvenient, but I really hope you will be able to use this as a cultural learning experience and enjoy this cultural challenge. 

We have your dietary requirements and will try our best to accommodate them. The food will be in traditional Bento style. Feel free to buy additional food of your preference on the way, there is some (limited) refrigerator space where it can be stored. Here is the link to the place (use google translate to get it in English).

Application and Further Info

The application form is now available. Check here for any updates. A poster to share with colleagues and friends is herePrint it and spread the word! If you have any questions about the programme, the stream leaders or the general procedure, please do not hesitate to contact me or Yasin.  

Happy to answer your questions and look forward to seeing you all in Nagoya in a few months!