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About us Faculty of Behavioural and Social Sciences Psychology Research Units Social Psychology

Psychology of Collective Action against Collective Disadvantage

Social Psychology

This project reflects a by now 14-year ongoing project on the core motivations that individuals have to engage in collective action against collective disadvantage (e.g., collective protests against discrimination). Based on different methods, samples, and collaborations, this project aims at developing a proper psychological theory of collective action against collective disadvantage.

Researchers and partners

Partners outside of the University of Groningen
  • Colin Leach (University of Connecticut), Jonas Rees (University of Bielefeld), Huseyin Cakal (Keele University), Maja Kutlaca (University of Osnabruck), Siwar Aslah (IDC Herzliya), Eran Halperin (IDC Herzliya), Tamar Saguy (IDC Herzliya), Smadar Cohen-Chen (University of Surrey), Davide Mazzoni (University of Bologna), Elvira Cicognani (University of Bologna), Anna Kende (University of Budapest), Paulina Gorska (University of Warsaw)


Courses connected to this project
  • Bachelor 3rd year: Group Dynamics
Selection of BA and MA student projects
  • Anything related to the psychology of collective action


  • Van Zomeren, M., Leach, C. W., & Spears, R. (2012). Protesters as "Passionate Economists": A dynamic dual pathway model of approach coping with collective disadvantage. Personality and Social Psychology Review, 16, 180-198
  • Van Zomeren, M. (2013). Four core social-psychological motivations to undertake collective action. Social and Personality Psychology Compass, 7, 378-388
  • Van Zomeren, M. (2015). Collective action as relational interaction: A new relational hypothesis on how non-activists become activists. New Ideas in Psychology, 39, 1-11
  • Van Zomeren, M. (2016). Building a Tower of Babel? Integrating Core Motivations and Features of the Social Structure in the Political Psychology of Political Action. Advances in Political Psychology, 37, 1-28
Successful grant proposals and other achievements
  • 2009 NWO Vernieuwingsimpuls VENI Grant (€ 250.000) awarded to Martijn van Zomeren on a project about collective action
  • 2011 NWO MaGW Open Competition Grant (€ 208.193) awarded to Martijn van Zomeren and Tom Postmes on a project about collective action

University's focus areas

  • Sustainable Society
Last modified:29 March 2021 10.17 a.m.