Personality, Relationships, and Evolutionary Psychology [PREP] Lab

About the lab

This lab is housed in Padua Italy but has an extended reach from Australia to Alabama and close ties to labs in Warsaw Poland. Our research focuses on individual differences, broadly construed, in mating psychology, psychometrics, the dark side of personality, online behavior, and prejudice. We emphasize expanding what is known about topics such as the Dark Triad traits, asking questions that have been avoided or missed in relation to sexuality and relationships, and generally attempting to challenge our (and your) assumptions about human nature and our place in the universe.

Featured projects (1)

This project is loosely linked to my Opus grant to look at online dating behaviors.

Featured research (11)

Intimate partners are common targets of cyberstalking, yet despite the negative impact the behavior remains largely underexplored. In the present study, we explore behavioral methods adopted to cyberstalk intimate partners. Participants (N = 449, 50.1% men) recruited via Amazon's Mechanical Turk completed an online questionnaire and we assessed a range of intimate partner cyberstalking behaviors across mating contexts (i.e., short-term v long-term relationships) and goals (i.e., mate retention v mate attainment). These cyberstalking behaviors were factor analyzed (i.e., Exploratory Factor Analysis) and reduced to reveal three dimensions: Passive, invasive, and duplicitous. Both men and women largely engage in passive cyberstalking, though women perpetrated more overall, passive, and invasive intimate partner cyberstalking. Women were also likely to adopt invasive behaviors to retain a long-term mate and attain a short-term mate. We also examined associations between the Dark Tetrad traits, social motives, and cyberstalking. All Dark Tetrad traits were associated with more overall cyberstalking but demonstrated differential patterns across the three forms, substantiating a dimensional conceptualization of this online behavior. Results of the current study contribute to establishing a theoretical framework to understand perpetration of intimate partner cyberstalking, ultimately contributing to managing the potentially harmful online behavior.
COVID-19 has been a source of fear around the world. We asked whether the measurement of this fear is trustworthy and comparable across countries. In particular, we explored the measurement invariance and cross-cultural replicability of the widely-used Fear of COVID-19 (the FCV-19S) scale, testing community samples from 48 countries (N = 14,558). The findings indicate that the Fear of COVID-19 scale has a somewhat problematic structure, yet the one-factor solution is replicable across cultural contexts and could be used in studies that compare people who vary on gender and education level. The validity of the scale is supported by a consistent pattern of positive correlations with perceived stress and general anxiety. However, given the unclear structure of the FCV-19S, we recommend using latent factor scores, instead of raw scores, especially in cross-cultural comparisons.
The current research aimed to examine the reasons people are single, that is, not in an intimate relationship, across eight different countries-Brazil, China, Czech Republic, Greece, Hungary, India, Japan, and the UK. We asked a large cross-cultural sample of single participants (N = 6,822) to rate 92 different possible reasons for being single. These reasons were classified into 12 factors, including one's perceived inability to find the right partner, the perception that one is not good at flirting, and the desire to focus on one's career. Significant sex and age effects were found for most factors. The extracted factors were further classified into three separate domains: Perceived poor capacity to attract mates, desiring the freedom of choice, and currently being in between relationships. The domain structure, the relative importance of each factor and domain, as well as sex and age effects were relatively consistent across countries. There were also important differences however, including the differing effect sizes of sex and age effects between countries.
We examined how the perception of past events might contribute to the understanding of vulnerable narcissism. Across seven samples (NGrand = 1271), we investigated the association between vulnerable narcissism and individual differences in negative view of the past as well as how both were associated with basic personality traits, intrapersonal (i.e., affect, life satisfaction, and self-esteem) and interpersonal (i.e., anger, and hostility) outcomes, and memory biases of immediate life events and early life traumas. We found that vulnerable narcissism was reliably correlated with a negative view of the past. Additionally, both variables showed similar personality profiles (e.g., high neuroticism) and overlapped in explaining various outcomes, including self-esteem, anger, hostility, recalled traumas, and a negative memory bias.
Folk wisdom and research on personality inferences suggest one should be able to judge a person's personality based on their behaviour related to alcohol consumption. In a sample of Australians (N = 1,232), we compared the utility of knowing where and what people prefer to consume alcohol to understand people's personality (broadly construed). Where people drank had limited utility; predicting hopelessness in those who drank at home more than at a licensed venue and the consumption of spirits for those high in extraversion at a licensed venue. In contrast, there were several differences in people's personality across drink preferences. For example, neuroticism was higher in cider and spirit drinkers than beer and wine drinkers. Results are framed within the personality inference literature and qualified by (1) the traditional beer-drinking culture of our sample and (2) the complex relationships between personality and any behaviour, including habits surrounding alcohol consumption.

Lab head

Peter K Jonason
  • Department of General Psychology
About Peter K Jonason
  • I am most known for my work on the Dark Triad traits (e.g., psychopathy, narcissism, & Machiavellianism). I have examined a wide array of variables linked to these traits including creativity, mating, and values. Currently I am compiling a book on measures of the dark side of personality. I have also maintained an interest in mating strategies and mate preferences relying on big data, cross-national data, and experimental studies.

Members (14)

Emrah Özsoy
  • Sakarya University
Evita March
  • Federation University Australia
Lidia Baran
  • University of Silesia in Katowice
Vlad Burtăverde
  • University of Bucharest
Bruno Bonfá-Araujo
  • Universidade São Francisco
Monica Koehn
  • University of Canberra
Tim Wasserman
  • Syracuse University
Mark Davis
  • University of West Alabama
Josephine Milne-Home
Josephine Milne-Home
  • Not confirmed yet
franco giaretta
franco giaretta
  • Not confirmed yet
Lennart Freyth de Polo León
Lennart Freyth de Polo León
  • Not confirmed yet

Alumni (8)

Peter Kay Chai Tay
  • Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT)
Ceylan Okan
  • Western Sydney University
Dylan Underhill
  • Western Sydney University
James Paul Middleton
  • Western Sydney University