Behavioural Synchrony



We study mechanisms and processes of social interaction, mainly focusing on synchronisation and mutual adaptation. These mechanisms underlie much of social interaction, and they are interesting because they seem to be automatic and even difficult to resist. Synchronising with other people has positive emotional effects, as it increases empathy. There is a lot to learn about synchronicity, coordination, and getting in and out of sync. There is still only a little research on actual, dyadic or group interactions. Many of these dyadic experiments involve very limited and artificial tasks, and much of the more natural and free interaction data consists of video observations, and not exact measurements of participants. This also means that we are still lacking in methods of analysing such dyadic and group data.

We aim to improve this situation by developing methods for studying dyads in natural, free, rich interactions. We utilise multi-modal recordings (video, audio, motion capture, physiological signals, brain recordings (MEG & EEG), eye tracking...) because the interactions are also multimodal in nature. 

We are interested in all kinds of behaviours, from conversations (word games and decision making) to playing music (including simple rhythms), dance (including simple hand movements and gestures), to playing different kinds of games. 

Publications (sample)

Stevanovic, M., Himberg, T., Niinisalo, M., Kahri, M., Peräkylä, A., Sams, M. & Hari, R. (2017). Sequentiality, Mutual Visibility, and Behavioral Matching: Body Sway and Pitch Register During Joint Decision Making. In Research on Language and Social Interaction, DOI:10.1080/08351813.2017.1262130, 1–21. (WEB)

Himberg, T., Hirvenkari, L., Mandel, A., & Hari, R. (2015). Word-by-word entrainment of speech rhythm during joint story building. Frontiers in Psychology, 6, 797.

Himberg, T., Niinisalo, M., & Hari, R. (2015). Coordination of Fluent Hand-Movements in Dyads. Presented at the RPPW15, Amsterdam, Netherlands.

(plus all kinds of conference presentations)

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