Staff Profile


Dr. Dennis Nigbur

Senior Lecturer

School: School of Psychology, Politics and Sociology

Campus: Canterbury

Tel: 01227 923838

Profile summary

I first came to Canterbury from Gelsenkirchen, Germany, in 1996. I graduated from the University of Kent with a BSc in Social Psychology in 1999. I conducted my doctoral studies on national identity under the supervision of Dr Marco Cinnirella at Royal Holloway, University of London, and received a PhD in 2004. As a Surrey Scholar post-doctoral researcher, I worked at the University of Surrey on an extensive field study about predictors of kerbside waste recycling, before moving to the University of Sussex as a research fellow on a large longitudinal study of children's acculturation orientations. I took up a lectureship at Canterbury Christ Church University in 2007 and was promoted to senior lecturer in 2011. I am currently the director of the BSc programme in Psychology and the Chair of the Faculty Ethics and Governance Committee. My teaching responsibilities include research methods, study skills and social psychology, and my research interests focus on the application of qualitative and quantitative methods to the study of cultural identity and the functioning of cultural groups. An additional facet is the interpretation of sustainability-related action in terms of social processes.

Research and knowledge exchange

My research interests are mostly related to identity, culture, and sustainability. I try to use both qualitative and quantitative methods to examine how groups such as nations, ethnic groups and neighbourhoods work, how people identify with them, and how members adopt (or do not adopt) the symbols, values and behaviours promoted and reproduced by group culture. My work has a strong European focus.

I have worked on research topics such as the content of English and German national identities (symbols, values, and traits) and their sensitivity to national identification and context; the acculturation orientations and well-being of South Asian and White British primary-school children; the link between national identification, acculturation expectations, and rejection of immigrants; and, in a somewhat different but not entirely separate strand of activity, the attitudes, norms and identifications underlying sustainability-related action. Currently, I am involved in projects including the following:

  • a qualitative focus group study on the subjective experience of national identity in several European nations;
  • a series of studies on acculturation experiences among several cultural groups in the UK (including Marisa Kolovos's doctoral research);
  • a quantitative study on national symbols and values in several European countries;
  • a quantitative study of planned behaviour and moral disengagement in the prediction of sustainability in the workplace;
  • a mixed-methods study on the role of zoos in how people think about biodiversity;
  • the experience of political involvement among young people (as the second supervisor of Patrick Readshaw's doctorate);
  • the experiences of bilingual families in Kent (as the second supervisor of Annie Deakin's doctoral studies).

I am an associate of the UK Institute for Migration Research ( and maintain the Multiculturalism Forum (, a network bringing together academics and practitioners with an interest in multiculturalism.

Teaching and subject expertise

I teach research methods (qualitative and quantitative), study skills, and social psychology (including cultural psychology). I am a fellow of the Higher Education Academy (HEA).

External activities

I am a graduate member of the British Psychological Society (BPS) and its Social Psychology Committee, and I also belong to the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI) and the International Academy for Intercultural Research (IAIR). I am the creator and maintainer of

Publications and research outputs

  • Brown, R., Baysu, G., Cameron, L., Nigbur, D., Rutland, A., Watters, C., ... Landau, A. (2013). Acculturation attitudes and social adjustment in British South Asian children: A longitudinal study. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 39(12), 1656-1667. doi:10.1177/0146167213500149
  • Nigbur, D. (2014). Making sense of acculturation: Self-reports and personal experience of international students. Presented at the BPS Social Psychology Section conference, Canterbury Christ Church University.
  • Nigbur, D., Brown, R., Cameron, L., Hossain, R., Landau, A., Le Touze, D., ... Watters, C. (2008). Acculturation, well-being and classroom behaviour among white British and British Asian primary-school children in the south-east of England: Validating a child-friendly measure of acculturation attitudes. International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 32(6), 493–504. doi:10.1016/j.ijintrel.2008.03.001
  • Nigbur, D., & Cinnirella, M. (2007). National identification, type and specificity of comparison, and their effects on descriptions of national character. European Journal of Social Psychology, 37(4), 672–691. doi:10.1002/ejsp.382
  • Nigbur, D., Lyons, E., & Uzzell, D. (2010). Attitudes, norms, identity and environmental behaviour: Using an expanded theory of planned behaviour to predict participation in a kerbside recycling programme. British Journal of Social Psychology, 49(2), 259–284. doi:10.1348/014466609X449395
  • Rutland, A., Cameron, L., Jugert, P., Nigbur, D., Brown, R., Watters, C., ... Le Touze, D. (2012). Group identity and peer relations: A longitudinal study of group identity, perceived peer acceptance and friendships amongst ethnic minority English children. British Journal of Developmental Psychology, 30(2), 283–302. doi:10.1111/j.2044-835X.2011.02040.x
  • Zagefka, H., & Nigbur, D. (2009). Akkulturation und Integration ethnischer Gruppen. In A. Beelmann & K. J. Jonas (eds.), Diskriminierung und Toleranz: Psychologische Grundlagen und Anwendungsperspektiven (pp. 173–192). Wiesbaden, Germany: VS Verlag.
  • Zagefka, H., Nigbur, D., Gonzalez, R., & Tip, L. (2013). Why does ingroup essentialism increase prejudice against minority members? International Journal of Psychology, 48(1), 60–68. doi:10.1080/00207594.2012.729841


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Last edited: 05/12/2017 03:57:00