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Case studies

Identifying and deploying conversational devices to secure positive outcomes in social interactions
Identifying and deploying conversational devices to secure positive outcomes in social interactions
Identifying and deploying conversational devices to secure positive outcomes in social interactions

Research Rising Star - Elizabeth Stokoe

  • Identifying and deploying conversational devices to secure positive outcomes in social interactions

Professor Elizabeth Stokoe joined the Department of Social Sciences in 2002. Prior to this she lectured at University College Worcester (2000-02) and the Institute of Behavioural Sciences at the University of Derby (1997-2000).

Her research uses conversation analysis to explore communication across a variety of contexts – including police interrogation, commercial sales, hostage negotiation, family mediation, dating.

People generally think that talk is “messy” and disorganised, but Stokoe’s scientific analysis demonstrates that it is highly systematic and organised. Her work also shows that what we think we know about talk is often wrong, and that simulated or role-played interaction is inauthentic.

Professor Stokoe’s work underlines the significance of identifying and deploying successful practices to secure positive outcomes in all interactions – from converting callers to clients to asking the right questions in police interrogation.

In 2011, she launched the Conversation Analytic Role-play Method (CARM). CARM is an evidence-based communication training technique which is now used by a variety of organisations, including the Metropolitan Police, the College of Mediators, Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, Warner Leisure Hotels and the Ministry of Justice.

In addition to research, Professor Stokoe served as an Associate Editor of the British Journal of Social Psychology and Co-Editor of Gender and Language (2011-2014). She is the founding Editor of Mediation Theory and Practice due to launch in 2016. She teaches research methods and forensic psychology.

As well as presenting at academic conferences worldwide, she has delivered a TEDx talk (2014) and a Royal Institution Friday Evening Discourse (2015). Her research and biography were the subject of BBC Radio 4’s The Life Scientific (2013).

CARM has won a WIRED Innovation Fellowship (2015) and the University’s Social Enterprise Award for Social Impact in 2013. The significance of her work was recognised with a British Psychological Society Mid-Career Award (2011).