Elizabeth Stokoe

Loughborough academic awarded honorary fellowship from the British Psychological Society

Professor Elizabeth Stokoe has been named as an Honorary Fellow, one of the most prestigious awards given by the British Psychological Society.

Elizabeth is a leading figure in language and social interaction and the study of how people communicate. She has conducted many studies of both mundane and high stakes conversation, from first dates and sales calls to healthcare and suicide crisis communication.

She developed ‘CARM’, a research-based training tool, which was awarded a Wired Innovation Fellowship, and she has done much work to engage wide international audiences in the science of conversation. In 2013 her research and biography were featured in Radio 4’s The Life Scientific, and she has given many prestigious lectures including at the Royal Institution.

Previous recipients of this fellowship include Carl Jung, Jean Piaget, and Noam Chomsky.

On receiving the award, Liz said: “I am so proud to be awarded this Honorary Fellowship of the British Psychological Society alongside, this year, Professor Stephen Reicher from the University of St Andrews.

“To join a list that includes such influential and renowned figures is also a bit surreal. I am thrilled to be recognized for the work I have done – especially in terms of impact and communicating my research to a wide audience beyond academia. I wouldn’t have been able to any of it without brilliant colleagues and students. I am extraordinarily proud of the collective work of discursive psychologists and conversation analysts at Loughborough and around the world, who ask and answer important questions about how people communicate.”

Dr Jon Sutton, Editor of The Psychologist commented: “To me, a great Psychologist is one who changes how you see everyday behaviours and interactions. By this yardstick, few can measure up to Professor Elizabeth Stokoe over the past decade and more.

“Through articles, podcasts, live events and more, Professor Stokoe has had a major impact on how a wide range of people think, feel and behave. Speaking up on important issues, she has been a hub for social psychology both in the UK and internationally. This has helped to ensure that the field is so much more than ‘academic’.  On top of all this, Professor Stokoe is generous in her support and mentorship of others, both within academia and beyond.”

Dr Simon Goodman, Chair, Qualitative Methods in Psychology section of the British Psychological Society added: “Professor Stokoe is a leading social psychologist, so we at the British Psychological Society’s Qualitative Methods in Psychology section are delighted that she is being recognised by the BPS with this award.

“Professor Stokoe’s work in language and communication is a great example of how effective qualitative research can be. During the last year, she joined both a Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) behavioural science subgroup as well as the behaviour group of Independent SAGE, to support UK policy and practice on how best to communicate public health messages to keep people safe during the covid pandemic. For these reasons, we are very glad to see her work being celebrated.”