An investigation into whether nonverbal mimicry could be used to increase cooperation.

Nonverbal mimicry is often considered a ‘social glue’, due to its ability to help bind people together and facilitate harmonious interpersonal interactions.


Information obtained from suspects and/or witnesses play a crucial role in the crime solving process. As such, when a suspect or witness is apprehended there is an urgent need for investigators to elicit intelligence successfully and reliably.

The overarching aim of the current doctoral thesis was to investigate whether nonverbal mimicry could be used to increase cooperation, measured as information disclosure, and the underlying psychological mechanisms through which it works to do so.

Across four studies, we identified interpersonal closeness as one of the psychological mechanisms through which mimicry works to increase cooperation, as well as the regions of mimicry (discreet body movements) that are related to closeness. Extending beyond the dyad, we also examined whether nonverbal mimicry observed by a third-party effects willingness to cooperate.

Download Abbie's 'Doctoral Thesis Overview' to read a summary of her experiments as well as the key findings.

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