| Geoff MacDonald, PhD
Associate Professor of Psychology
University of Toronto
100 St. George Street
Toronto, Ontario, M5S 3G3
Office: Sidney Smith, Room 4010
Office Phone: (416) 978 - 3840
I want to understand why we relate to each other the way we do - what is the space between us, and what draws us to risk narrowing that space? My perspective begins with the premise that belonging is a deep and ancient need, instilled through millions of years of natural selection. One corollary of this premise is that social exclusion should activate similarly ancient warning systems. I have argued that social exclusion literally hurts, and am engaged in research to explore the connections between social and physical pain. Another corollary is that intimacy should be a powerful and fundamental reward. I have argued that potential for intimacy has been an underestimated motivator of social behaviour, and am engaged in research examining the role of intimacy perceptions in the regulation of social choices. I am strongly guided in this work by an attachment perspective, and am particularly interested in applying my ideas to romantic relationships. For further information about my research, please visit Research Interests .