Matthijs van Leeuwen

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Biographical Sketch:

I received my BA in Psychology from the University of Nijmegen and did my MSC thesis at Dartmouth College and the University of Nijmegen. After a period working as a research assistant for Rick van Baaren I started my PhD on Imitation, empathy and attractiveness at the University of Amsterdam with him & Ap Dijksterhuis. After one year I moved together with the Unconscious Lab to the University of Nijmegen were we currently reside.

Extra-curricular interests include Chinese martial arts, climbing, the occasional kayaking and mixing semi-successful cocktails.

Research Interests:

Influences of attractiveness, behavioral imitation, perspective taking and emotional concern, working memory capacity, (un)conscious processing and the psychology of terrorism

The specifics of my current project is how facial attractiveness influences behavioral imitation and how this attractiveness moderates the effect of empathy on imitation.


Dijksterhuis, Van Baaren, Bongers, Bos, Van Leeuwen, & Van der Leij. The rational unconscious: Conscious versus unconscious thought in complex consumer choice
Stel, M., Van Baaren, R., Blascovich, J., McCall, C., Pollmann, M., Van Leeuwen, T., & Vonk, R. (2006). Mimicry and liking: A functional approach. [Imitatie en liking: een functionele benadering]. In R.W. Holland, J. Ouwerkerk, C. van Laar, R. de Ruiter & J. Ham (Ed.), Jaarboek Sociale Psychologie 2005. Groningen: ASPO Pers.
Van Leeuwen, M. L., & Macrae, C. N. (2004). Is Beautiful Always Good? Implicit Benefits of Facial Attractiveness. Social Cognition , 22, 6, 637-649.
Stel, M., Van Baaren, R. B., Blascovich, J., McCall, C., Pollmann, M.H., van Leeuwen, M. L., Mastop, J., & Vonk, R. (in press). Mimicry and liking: Is it really that simple? Experimental Psychology.