Interacting with the World

Relationships, sex, and attraction

Should you talk to strangers?

Relationships are a core part of our lives. From the familial relationships that exist from birth, to the sexual orientation that we develop as we grow, and the impact that friends and strangers have through their interactions with us.

  • Can interactions between parents and children shape experiences within our bodies?
  • Do others change how we see ourselves?
  • How does sexual orientation develop?
  • How do our emotions and personalities influence our interactions with others?
  • Why do some marriages last, while others crumble?

Our internationally recognised researchers explore these questions and others in their attempts to understand the role that all relationships play in shaping how we think about, feel and understand ourselves and the world around us.

Using diverse experimental methods that include self reporting, questionnaires, behavioural coding and observations, psychophysiology, and more, we try to understand our place in the world through our interactions with others. We also carry out research in related areas, including meaning in life, trust, and interdependence, emotion, and well-being.

Selected papers

Our academics

A woman on the left and a man on the right walking down a tree-lined path, with woman is wearing a rainbow-coloured skirt.
Podcast: Love In Lockdown: Maintaining Relationships Through A Global Pandemic

In this podcast we're joined by Dr Veronica Lemarche, whose research focuses on understanding how people regulate trust and dependence in their romantic relationships, and how feelings of uncertainty or vulnerability can influence relationship stability.

Listen to the podcast