Felix Warneken studies the origins of human social behavior, with a focus on the development and evolution of cooperation and morality. He uses developmental and cross-cultural studies with children, as well as comparative studies with nonhuman apes. He completed his Ph.D. and postdoctoral training at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany. Before coming to Michigan, he was an assistant and later associate professor of psychology at Harvard University.

He has received several awards, including an NSF CAREER Award, the Janet Taylor Spence Award for Transformative Early Career Contributions from the Association for Psychological Science, and the Boyd McCandless Award by the American Psychological Association.

 

Felix Warneken

Principal Investigator, warneken@umich.edu

 


 

Sebastian Grüneisen : Post Doctoral Researcher

Sebastian Grüneisen

Post Doctoral Researcher

sgruenei@umich.edu

Personal Website

Sebastian studied psychology at Northumbria University and the University of St Andrews in the UK, and completed his PhD at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany. His research investigates the developmental and evolutionary origins of human cooperation. To this end, he adapts game theory paradigms for experimental studies with children and nonhuman great apes, particularly chimpanzees. Using this approach, he aims at uncovering the cognitive and motivational components underlying cooperative decision-making in humans and our closest evolutionary relatives.

Nicole Wen : Post Doctoral Researcher

Nicole Wen

Post Doctoral Researcher

nwen@umich.edu

Personal website

Nicole received her B.S. in Psychology, B.A. in Plan II Honors, and then completed her Ph.D. in Cognitive and Developmental Psychology at the University of Texas at Austin. Nicole is interested in the development of social cognition and is particularly interested in the role of cultural conventions in children’s prosocial behaviors and cooperation with in- and out-group members. Nicole’s dissertation research explored how children identify and acquire rituals to affiliate with social groups and how evaluations of imitation in social learning differ across the lifespan and cultures, in the U.S. and Vanuatu.

Young-eun Lee : Graduate Student

Young-eun Lee

Graduate Student

leeyeun@umich.edu

Personal Website

Young-eun is a PhD student in Developmental Psychology at the University of Michigan. She got her bachelor’s degree in Psychology at Yonsei University, South Korea. Prior to joining UM, she received her master’s degrees in Psychology from Yonsei University and Harvard University. Young-eun studies the development of altruistic punishment in children. She is particularly interested in children’s enforcement of social norms (e.g., fairness norms) and its underlying mechanisms.

Sarah Probst : Graduate Student

Sarah Probst

Graduate Student

saprobst@umich.edu

Personal website

Sarah is a first year PhD student at the University of Michigan. She received her B.S. in Psychology with Honors from the University of Pittsburgh in 2017 and then worked as project coordinator of the Social Development Lab at the University at Buffalo. Here at UM she is interested in studying the cognitive mechanisms influencing prosocial behavior in infants and toddlers.

Luke Quarles : Lab Manager

Luke Quarles

Lab Manager

quarlesl@umich.edu

CV

Luke is the lab manager for the Social Minds Lab. He received his bachelor’s degrees in psychology and animal behavior ecology and conservation from Canisius College and has studied social behavior in both children and chimpanzees. Luke is interested in the development of social cognition, particularly with regard to cooperation.

Perry Bower : Research Assistant

Perry Bower

Research Assistant

Perry is a junior studying biopsychology, cognition, and neuroscience at the University of Michigan. Her academic interests lie in regular and irregular adolescent development, the neural underpinnings of psychopathology, and the implications these may have within the judicial system.

Jack Carter : Research Assistant

Jack Carter

Research Assistant

Jack is a senior studying Psychology at the University of Michigan. He is interested in early child development as well as health and medicine. After graduating, he plans to take a gap year abroad before attending medical school.

Kerianne McManus : Research Assistant

Kerianne McManus

Research Assistant

Kerianne is a senior at the University of Michigan studying Biopsychology, Cognition, and Neuroscience. She is interested in the crossover between psychology and education, specifically with regard to how children learn and develop.

Annie Rashes : Research Assistant

Annie Rashes

Research Assistant

Annie is a senior studying Psychology with a minor in Community Action and Social Change. Her academic interests include the development of child psychopathology and social development in children and how society treats them.

Julia Vespoli : Research Assistant

Julia Vespoli

Research Assistant

Julia is a senior at the University of Michigan majoring in Biopsychology, Cognition and Neuroscience with a minor in Biology. She is interested in developmental neuroanatomy and disorders due to hormonal or genetic factors. Julia is also curious as to how innate and environmental variables in childhood may effect individuals over their lifetimes.

Emma Zordan : Research Assistant

Emma Zordan

Research Assistant

Emma is a junior at the University of Michigan double majoring in Biopsychology, Cognition, and Neuroscience, and Music Performance. Her academic interests include the development of language and social cognition in infants and adolescents.