Christopher Bryan

Contact Information

Assistant Professor
Phone: 858-822-4530 (Lab: 858-246-1602)
Office: McGill 5322
Email: cbryan@ucsd.edu
Web: bryanlab.ucsd.edu/

Research Interests

Psychological influence, the self, behavioral decision-making, psychology and policy, political psychology

My research spans a range of theoretical interests and is driven by a core motivation to do research that enhances our understanding of and ability to address important real-world social, political, and policy problems. I am particularly interested in how subtle framing manipulations can change people’s attitudes and behavior in ways that benefit them, their communities and the larger society. A major theoretical theme of much of this work is the role of the self in influencing attitudes and behavior.

For example, I have looked at how framing manipulations that invoke the self can get people to vote in elections, prevent people from cheating even when they know they won’t be caught, get young children to put down a toy and help an adult with tedious chores, influence people’s real-life retirement saving decisions, and open people’s minds to different ways of thinking about controversial social and political issues.

Selected Publications

  • Bryan, C. J., Master, A. & Walton, G. W. (2014) ‘Helping’ versus ‘being a helper’: Invoking the self to increase helping in young children. Child Development, 85, 1771-2105.
  • Bryan, C. J., Adams, G. S. & Monin, B. (2013). ‘Cheating’ vs. ‘being a cheater’: Implicating the self prevents unethical behavior. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 142, 1001-1005
  • Bryan, C. J., & Hershfield, H. E. (2012). You owe it to yourself: Boosting retirement saving with a responsibility-based appeal. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 141, 429-432.
  • Bryan, C. J., Walton, G. M., Rogers, T., & Dweck, C. S. (2011). Motivating voter turnout by invoking the self. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA, 108, 12653-12656.
  • Bryan, C. J., Dweck, C. S., Ross, L., Kay, A. C., & Mislavsky, N. O. (2009). Political mindset: Effects of schema priming on liberal-conservative political assessments. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 45, 890-895.

Updated Oct 2014