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Project Director

Harvey Whitehouse is Chair of Social Anthropology at the University of Oxford, and Professorial Fellow at Magdalen College, Oxford. When he is not conducting research on rituals, he may be found messing about in boats and/or birdwatching.

Personal website:  http://www.harveywhitehouse.com/

Research Stream Leaders


Cristine Legare is Assistant Professor of Psychology at the University of Texas in Austin, and director of the Cognition, Culture, and Development Laboratory there. She leads the Imitative Learning of Rituals stream, which involves experimental research on children and their parents in the US and in rural Vanuatu. Michael D. Buhrmester is a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Oxford, and has taken over the lead of the research stream on The Social Function of Rituals, which looks at how rituals involving synchrony, causal opacity, and shared dysphoria affect social cohesion and intergroup behaviour, for the final phase of the project. This stream was previously co-ordinated by Ryan McKay, Senior Lecturer of Psychology at Royal Holloway, University of London. Harvey Whitehouse is Chair of Social Anthropology at the University of Oxford. He leads the research stream on Rituals in Real Life, which examines the causes of consequences of human ritual participation in history, and among groups involved in violent conflict.

Core Team Members

Current: Quentin Atkinson (University of Auckland); Scott Atran (University of Michigan); Brock Bastian (University of New South Wales); Amy Bogaard (University of Oxford); Joanna Bryson (University of Bath); Michael Buhrmester (University of Oxford); Thomas Currie (University of Exeter); Oliver S. Curry (University of Oxford); Nicolas Escoffier (National University of Singapore); Kevin C. Feeney (Trinity College Dublin); Pieter François (University of Hertfordshire); Ángel Gómez Jiménez (UNED); Steph Grohmann (University of Oxford); Jamin Halberstadt (University of Otago); Maggie Hall (Western Sydney University); Paul Harris (Harvard University); Hadassah Head (SUNY Binghamton); Joseph Henrich (University of British Columbia); Michael Hochberg (Université Montpellier 2); Ian Hodder (Stanford University); Juan Jiménez (UNED); Jonathan Jong (Coventry University); Ken Kahn (University of Oxford); Jonathan Lanman (Queens University Belfast); Camilla Mazzucato (Stanford University); Brian McQuinn (prev. University of Oxford); Daniel Mullins (University of Hertfordshire); Valerie van Mulukom (University of Oxford); Ara Norenzayan (University of British Columbia); Paul Reddish (National University of Singapore); Elaine Reese (University of Otago); Kate Rossmanith (Macquarie University); Gul Deniz Salali (UCL); Silvio Ricardo da Silva (Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte); Elena Stewart (UNED); Robert Thomson (Hokkaido University); Eddie Tong (National University of Singapore); Shuhei Tsuchida (Hokkaido University); Peter Turchin (University of Connecticut); David Sloan Wilson (SUNY Binghamton); William B. Swann Jr. (University of Texas at Austin); Alexandra Vázquez (UNED); Rachel Watson-Jones (University of Texas at Austin); Dimitris Xygalatas (University of Connecticut); Maria Emilia Yamamoto (Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte); Masaki Yuki (University of Hokkaido).

Past: Philip Cho (Yonsei University); Richard English (University of St Andrews); Susan Gelman (University of Michigan); Miriam Matthews (RAND Corporation and Pardee RAND Graduate School); Azim Shariff (University of Oregon); Richard Sosis (University of Connecticut); Lauren Swiney (University of Oxford).