Prof. Dr. Roland Imhoff


Since 10/2015
Professor of Social and Legal Psychology (W2), Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz
09/2012 – 09/2015
Juniorprofessor (W1) of Social Psychology: Social Cognition, Department of Psychology, University of Cologne
04/2010 – 08/2012
Research Assistant, Department for Social and Legal Psychology, Department of Psychology, University of Bonn
10/2006 - 3/2010
Doctoral scholarship from the Evangelisches Studienwerk Villigst e.V. and Student Assistant, Department for Social and Legal Psychology, Department of Psychology, University of Bonn
Diploma in Psychology

Research interests

  • Conspiracy mentality
  • Data-driven approaches for the content-related description of stereotypes
  • Prejudices, stigmatization, and labeling-effects
  • Representations of history and intergroup-relationships
  • Implicit social cognition
  • Automatic processes of sexual interest


Third-party funds

  • DFG material expenses grant “Sekundärer Antisemitismus – zugrundeliegende psychologische Prozesse” (Secondary antisemitism – underlying psychological processes) (IM 147/1-1) (€ 120,600)
  • German-Israeli Foundation research grant “Seventy Years Later: Historical Representations of the Holocaust and their effects on German-Israeli Relations” (I-1218- 358.4/2012) – (€165,000) – with Gilad Hirschberger and Katja Hanke
  • University zu Köln (University of Cologne) Advanced Postdoc Grant: “Content and application of fundamental stereotype dimensions” (€ 169,260)
  • DFG material expenses grant “Taking a Measure of Comparative Thinking” (IM 147/3-1) (€139,800) in the context of the research group “Relativity in Social Cognition: Antecedents and Consequences of Comparative Thinking” (FOR 2150) - with Ron Dotsch and Daniël Wigboldus



Journal articles (peer-reviewed)

Imhoff, R., Koch, A., & Flade, F. (accepted). (Pre)occupations: A data-driven model of jobs and its consequences for categorization and evaluation. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology. [Open materials and data]

Lamberty, P., & Imhoff, R. (accepted). Powerful Pharma and its Marginalized Alternatives? Effects of Individual Differences in Conspiracy Mentality on Attitudes towards Medical Approaches. Social Psychology. [Open materials and data]

Imhoff, R., & Lamberty, P. (accepted). How paranoid are conspiracy believers? Towards a more fine-grained understanding of the connect and disconnect between paranoia and belief in conspiracy theories. European Journal of Social Psychology. [Open materials and data]

Imhoff, R., Lamberty, P., & Klein, O. (in press). Using power as a negative cue: How conspiracy mentality affects epistemic trust in sources of historical knowledge. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin. [Open materials and data]

Imhoff, R. , Lange, J., & Germar, M. (in press). Identification and location tasks rely on different mental processes: A diffusion model account of validity effects in spatial cueing paradigms with emotional stimuli. Cognition and Emotion. [Open materials and data]

Koch, A. S., Kervyn, N., Kervyn, M., & Imhoff, R. (in press). Studying the cognitive map of the U.S. states: Ideology and prosperity stereotypes predict interstate prejudice. Social Psychological and Personality Science. [Open materials and data]

Imhoff, R., & Jahnke, S. (2018). Determinants of Punitive Attitudes Toward People with Pedophilia: Dissecting Effects of the Label and Intentionality Ascriptions. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 47, 353-361. [Open materials and data]

Imhoff, R. & Lamberty, P. (2017). Too special to be duped: Need for uniqueness motivates conspiracy beliefs. European Journal of Social Psychology, 47, 724-734.

Imhoff, R., Bilewicz, M., Hanke, K., Kahn, D. T., Henkel-Guembel, N., Halabi, S., Shani-Sherman, T., & Hirschberger, G. (in press). Explaining the inexplicable: Differences in attributions to the Holocaust in Germany, Israel and Poland. Political Psychology.

Bilewicz, M., Witkowska, M., Stefaniak, A., & Imhoff, R. (2017). The lay historian explains intergroup behavior: Identification and epistemic abilities as correlates of ethnocentric historical attributions. Memory Studies, 10, 310-322.

Imhoff, R., Banse, R., & Schmidt, A. F. S. (2017). Toward a Theoretical Understanding of Sexual Orientation and Sexual Motivation. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 46, 29-33.

Imhoff, R. & Koch, A. (2017). How orthogonal are the Big Two of social perception? On the curvilinear relation between agency and communion. Perspectives in Psychological Science, 12, 122-137.

Koch, A.*, Imhoff, R.*, Dotsch, R., Unkelbach, C., & Alves, H. (2016). The ABC of stereotypes about groups: Agency / socio-economic success, conservative-progressive Beliefs, and Communion. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 110, 675–709.
* geteilte Erstautorenschaft

Imhoff, R. (2016). Zeroing in on the effect of the schizophrenia label on stigmatizing attitudes: A large scale study. Schizophrenia Bulletin,42, 456-463.

Lammers, J., & Imhoff, R. (2016). Power and sadomasochism: Understanding the antecedents of a knotty relationship. Social Psychological and Personality Science, 7, 142-148.

Bergen, E., Ahto, A., Schulz, A., Imhoff, R., Antfolk, J., Schuhmann, P., Alanko, K., Santtila, P., & Jern, P. (2015). Adult-adult and adult-child/adolescent online sexual interactions: An exploratory self-report study on the role of situational factors. Journal of Sex Research, 52, 1006-1016.

Schmidt, A. F., Zimmermann, P. S., Banse, R., & Imhoff, R. (2015). Ego depletion moderates the influence of automatic and controlled precursors of reactive aggression: A double dissociation. Social Psychology, 46, 132-141.

Heser, K., Imhoff, R., & Banse, R. (2015). Affiliation or power: What motivates behavior on social networking sites? Swiss Journal of Psychology, 74, 37-47.

Imhoff, R. (2015). Punitive attitudes against pedophiles or persons with sexual interest in children: Does the label matter? Archives of Sexual Behavior, 44, 35-44.

Jahnke, S., Imhoff, R., & Hoyer, J. (2015). Stigmatization of people with pedophilia: Two comparative surveys. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 44, 21-34.

Imhoff, R., Schmidt, A. F., & Gerstenberg, F. (2014). Exploring the Interplay of Trait Self-Control and Ego Depletion: Empirical Evidence for Ironic Effects. European Journal of Personality, 28, 413-424.

Imhoff, R., & Bruder, M. (2014). Speaking (Un-)Truth to Power: Conspiracy Mentality as a Generalized Political Attitude. European Journal of Personality, 28, 25-43.

Larue, D., Schmidt, A. F., Imhoff, R., Eggers, K., Schönbrodt, F. D., & Banse, R. (2014). Validation of direct and indirect measures of preference for sexual violence. Psychological Assessment, 26, 1173-1183.

Imhoff, R., & Schmidt, A. F. (2014). Sexual disinhibition under sexual arousal: Evidence for domain specificity in men and women. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 43, 1123-1136.

Imhoff, R., & Dotsch, R. (2013). Do we look like me or like us? Visual projection as self- or ingroup-projection. Social Cognition, 31, 806-816.

Gerstenberg, F. X. R., Imhoff, R., Banse, R., & Schmitt, M. (2014). Discrepancies between implicit and explicit self-concepts of intelligence: relations to modesty, narcissism, and achievement motivation. Frontiers in Psychology, 5:85.

Imhoff, R., Woelki, J., Hanke, S., & Dotsch, R. (2013). Warmth and competence in your face! Visual encoding of stereotype content. Frontiers in Psychology, 4:386.

Imhoff, R., Bergmann, X., Banse, R., & Schmidt, A. F. (2013). Exploring the Automatic Undercurrents of Sexual Narcissism: Individual Differences in the Sex-Aggression-Link. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 42, 1033-1041.

Gerstenberg, F., Imhoff, R., Banse, R., Altstötter-Gleich, C., Zinkernagel, A., & Schmitt, M. (2013). How Implicit-Explicit Consistency of the Intelligence Self-Concept Moderates Reactions to Performance Feedback. European Journal of Personality, 27, 238-255.

Bruder, M., Haffke, P., Neave, N., Nouripanah, N., & Imhoff, R. (2013). Measuring individual differences in generic beliefs in conspiracy theories across cultures: conspiracy mentality questionnaire. Frontiers in Psychology, 4:225.

Imhoff, R., Wohl, M., Erb, H.-P. (2013). When the past is far from dead: How ongoing consequences of genocides committed by the ingroup impact collective guilt. Journal of Social Issues, 69, 74-91.

Banse, R., Imhoff, R., Steffens, M., Schramm, N., Rösch, A., Robert, M., & Stangier, U. (2013). Partner-AMP and well-being: Evidence for an implicit secure base script? Personal Relationships, 20, 140-154.

Gerstenberg, F. X. R., Imhoff, R., & Schmitt, M. (2012). "Women are bad at math, but I’m not, am I?” Narcissistic Mathematical Self-Concept Predicts Vulnerability to Stereotype Threat Effect on Mathematical Performance. European Journal of Personality, 26, 588-599.

Imhoff, R., & Recker, J. (2012). Differentiating Islamophobia: Introducing a new scale to measure Islamoprejudice and Secular Islam Critique. Political Psychology, 33, 811-824.

Imhoff, R., Schmidt, A. F., Weiß, S., Young, A. W., & Banse, R. (2012). Vicarious Viewing Time: Prolonged response latencies for sexually attractive targets as a function of task- or stimulus-specific processing. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 41, 1389-1401.

Imhoff, R., Bilewicz, M., & Erb, H.-P. (2012). Collective Guilt versus Collective Regret. Different emotional reactions to ingroup atrocities. European Journal for Social Psychology, 42, 729-742.

Blaison, C., Imhoff, R., Hess, U., & Banse, R. (2012). The affect misattribution procedure: Hot or not? Emotion, 12, 403-412.

Dislich, F. X. R., Imhoff, R., Banse, R., Altstötter-Gleich, C., Zinkernagel, A., & Schmitt, M. (2012). Am I smart or not? Discrepancies between the implicit and the explicit self-concept of intelligence predict IQ test performance. European Journal of Personality, 26, 212-220.

Imhoff, R.*, Dotsch, R.*, Bianchi, M., Banse, R., & Wigboldus, D. (2011). Facing Europe: Visualizing spontaneous ingroup projection. Psychological Science, 22, 1583-1590.
* geteilte Erstautorenschaft

Imhoff, R., & Banse, R. (2011). Implicit and explicit attitudes towards ex-partners differentially predict breakup adjustment. Personal Relationships, 18, 427-438.

Imhoff, R., Schmidt, A. F., Bernhardt, J., Dierksmeier, A., & Banse, R. (2011). An inkblot for sexual preference: A semantic variant of the Affect Misattribution Procedure. Cognition and Emotion, 25, 676-690.

Bilewicz, M.*, Imhoff, R.*, & Drogosz, M. (2011). The humanity of what we eat. Conceptions of human uniqueness among vegetarians and omnivores. European Journal of Social Psychology, 41, 201-209.
* geteilte Erstautorenschaft

Imhoff, R., Schmidt, A. F., Nordsiek, U., Luzar, C., Young, A. W. & Banse, R. (2010). Viewing Time revisited: Prolonged response latencies for sexually attractive targets under restricted conditions. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 39, 1275-1288.

Imhoff, R. (2010). Zwei Formen des modernen Antisemitismus? Eine Skala zur Messung primären und sekundären Antisemitismus [Two forms of modern anti-Semitism? A scale for the measurement of primary and secondary ant-Semitism]. Conflict and Communication Online, 9.

Imhoff, R., & Banse, R. (2009) Ongoing victim suffering increases prejudice: The case of secondary antisemitism. Psychological Science, 20, 1443-1447.

Imhoff, R., & Erb, H.-P. (2009). What motivates nonconformity? Uniqueness Seeking blocks Majority Influence. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 35, 309-320.


Book contributions

Bilewicz, M., Witkowska, M., Stubig, S., Beneda, M., & Imhoff, R. (2017). How to educate about the Holocaust? Psychological obstacles in historical education in Poland and Germany. In C. Psaltis, M. Carretero & S. Cehajic-Clancy (Eds.) History teaching and conflict transformation: Social psychological theories, history teaching and reconciliation (pp. 169-197). London: Palgrave.

Banse, R., Schmidt, A. F., & Imhoff, R. (2016). Aggression from the perspective of the Reflective-Impulsive Model: Testing predictions using indirect measures. In R. Deutsch, B. Gawronski, & W. Hoffmann (Eds.). Reflective and impulsive determinants of human behavior (pp. 239-256). New York, NY: Psychology Press.

Imhoff, R. (2015). Beyond (right-wing) authoritarianism: Conspiracy mentality as an incremental predictor of prejudice. In. M. Bilewicz, A. Cichocka, & W. Soral (Eds.) The Psychology of Conspiracy (pp. 122-141).London: Routledge.

Schmidt, A. F., Banse, R., & Imhoff, R. (2015). Indirect measures in forensic contexts. In F. J. R. van de Vijver & T. Ortner (Eds.), Behavior Based Assessment in Personality, Social, and Applied Psychology (pp. 173-194). Göttingen: Hogrefe.

Imhoff, R. (2013). Fragebogen zur Erfassung von Verschwörungsmentalität – Kurzform. In C. J. Kemper, E. Brähler, & M. Zenger (Hrsg.), Psychologische und sozialwissenschaftliche Kurzskalen (pp. 334-336). Berlin: Medizinisch Wissenschaftliche Verlagsgesellschaft.

Imhoff, R. (2013). Skala zur Erfassung von Vorurteilen gegenüber dem Islam und säkularer Kritik am Islam - Kurzform. In C. J. Kemper, E. Brähler, & M. Zenger (Hrsg.), Psychologische und sozialwissenschaftliche Kurzskalen (pp. 279-282). Berlin: Medizinisch Wissenschaftliche Verlagsgesellschaft.

Imhoff, R. (2013). Skala zur Messung von primärem und sekundärem Antisemitismus – Kurzform. In C. J. Kemper, E. Brähler, & M. Zenger (Hrsg.), Psychologische und sozialwissenschaftliche Kurzskalen (pp. 220-223). Berlin: Medizinisch Wissenschaftliche Verlagsgesellschaft.

Banse, R., & Imhoff, R. (2013). Implicit cognition and relationship processes. In J. A. Simpson and L. Campbell (Eds.) The Oxford Handbook of Close Relationships (pp. 475-499). Oxford University Press.

Imhoff, R., & Decker, O. (2013). Verschwörungsmentalität als Weltbild. In: O. Decker, J. Kiess & E. Brähler (Hrsg.), Rechtsextremismus der Mitte (S. 130-145). Wiesbaden: Psychosozial Verlag.

Imhoff, R. (2009). Holocaust at the table - Experiences from seven years of "German-Israeli Exchange". In C. Misselwitz, & C. Siebeck (Eds.) Dissonant Memories - Fragmented Present. Exchanging young discourses between Israel and Germany (pp. 35-43). Bielefeld: transcript.



Imhoff, R. (2010). The Dynamics of Collective Guilt Three Generations after the Holocaust: Young Germans' Emotional Experiences in Response to the Nazi Past. Hamburg: Kovac.

Imhoff, R. (2006). Attraktivität von Minderheitenmeinungen. Saarbrücken: VDM.