Social Psychology Network

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Paul van Lange

Paul van Lange

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Paul van Lange is a Professor at the VU University at Amsterdam, the Netherlands, working on social interdependence, cooperation and competition, trust, and misuderstanding in social dilemmas. He has held a number of other positions, including Scientific Director of the Kurt Lewin Institute (see, Associate Editor of the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology and the European Journal of Social Psychology, member of the Policy Advice Committee of Netherlands Organization of Scientific Research, and president-elect of the Society of Experimental Social Psychology

His research interests center on broad, interdisciplinary topics that are best labeled in terms of "trust and cooperation" and "social dilemmas". He focuses on those patterns of social interaction that cannot be explained in terms of the assumption of “rational self-interest” and that are challenging to individuals, dyads, or groups. Key issues to which he is addicted as a researcher include:

(1) Differences in prosocial, individualistic, and competitive orientations (see Van Lange et al., 2011);
(2) Forgiveness, sacrifice, altruism, and generosity (see Klapwijk & Van Lange, 2009; Van Lange, 2008);
(3) Trust and misunderstanding in social interaction (see Van Lange, Finkenauer et al., 2011);
(4) Interdependence and taxonomic approaches to social psychology (see Van Lange & Rusbult, 2012);
(5) Theories of social psychology (see recent book, Van Lange, Kruglanski, & Higgins, 2012, Sage);
(6) Translating social psychology to everyday life (in newspapers, radio and televison interviews).

For more information, see his personal website:

Also, for more information on social dilemmas, see:

Primary Interests:

  • Aggression, Conflict, Peace
  • Close Relationships
  • Communication, Language
  • Ethics and Morality
  • Helping, Prosocial Behavior
  • Intergroup Relations
  • Interpersonal Processes
  • Person Perception
  • Personality, Individual Differences


Journal Articles:

Other Publications:

Courses Taught:

  • Bridging Social Psychology
  • Egoism and Altruism
  • Interdependence
  • Interdependence and Social Interaction
  • Interpersonal Processes
  • Introduction to Social Psychology

Paul van Lange
Faculty of Behavior and Movement Science
VU University Amsterdam
Van der Boechorststraat 1
1081 BT Amsterdam
The Netherlands

  • Work: 31-20-5988852
  • Home: 31-20-6642965
  • Mobile: 31-20-617730443
  • Fax: 31-20-5988921

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