John Adamopoulos

John Adamopoulos

B.A., Yale University M.A.
Ph.D., University of Illinois
Office: 2204 AuSable Hall
Phone: (616) 331-2388

Office Hours


Social and Cross-Cultural Psychology

Courses Taught

PSY 355 - Psychology and Culture
PSY 405 - History and Systems
PSY 492 - Advanced General Capstone

Current Research

My work focuses on the description of "interpersonal structure" (i.e., the psychological dimensions along which social behavior varies), and on the modeling of the mental representation of interpersonal behavior and of the social context in which it occurs. This work has implication both for traditional social/personality psychology, and for a number of related theoretical issues (e.g., the possibility of distinguishing "universal" from culture-specific psychological processes, and the emergence over time of the dimensions along which meaning about interpersonal behavior is communicated).My research in this area follows a two-pronged approach: (1) Laboratory studies (monocultural and cross-cultural) explore the viability of a model that explains the emergence of interpersonal behavior by assuming that all behavior involves the exchange of resources. (2) Analyses of interpersonal interactions in literary documents from different cultures and historical periods (e.g., the Homeric epics) test the model's assumption that the emergence of social behavior can be understood as a predictable evolutionary process.

More recently, related lines of research explore the role of culture in the formation and structure of individual and collective behavioral intentions, and in the construal of action.

Selected Recent Publications

Adamopoulos, J., & Stogiannidou, A. (1996). The perception of interpersonal action: Culture-general and culture-specific components. In H. Grad, A. Blanco, & J. Georgas  (Eds.) Key issues in cross-cultural psychology (pp. 263-275). Amsterdam: Swets & Zeitlinger.

Lonner, W. J., & Adamopoulos, J. (1997). Culture as antecedent to behavior. In J. W. Berry, Y. H. Poortinga, & J. Pandey (Eds.), Handbook of cross-cultural psychology, Vol. 1: Theory and method (2nd ed.) (pp. 43-83). Boston: Allyn & Bacon.

J. Adamopoulos & Y. Kashima (Eds.) (1999). Social psychology and cultural context. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications.

Adamopoulos, J. (1999). The emergence of cultural patterns of interpersonal behavior. In J. Adamopoulos & Y. Kashima (Eds.), Social psychology and cultural context (pp. 63-76). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications.

Adamopoulos, J., & Lonner, W. J. (2001). Culture and psychology at a crossroad: Historical perspective and theoretical analysis. In D. Matsumoto (Ed.), The handbook of culture and psychology (pp. 11-34). New York: Oxford University Press.

Adamopoulos, J. (2002). Culture and social behavior. In Lonner, W. J., Dinnel, D., Hayes, S., & Satter, D. (Eds.),  Readings in psychology and culture.  On-line readings (

Adamopoulos, J. (2004). Culture and interpersonal behavior. In C. Spielberger (Ed.), Encyclopedia of applied psychology (vol. 2) (pp. 387-395). San Diego, CA: Academic Press.

Adamopoulos, J. (2008).  On the entanglement of culture and individual behavior. In F. van de Vijver, D. A. van Hemert, & Y. H. Poortinga (Eds.), Multilevel analysis of individuals and cultures (pp. 27-62). New York: Lawrence Erlbaum.

Adamopoulos, J. (2009). From Homer to the 21st century: Charting the emergence of the structure of interpersonal meaning. In A. Gari & K. Mylonas (Eds.). Q.E.D. From Herodotus ethnographic journeys to cross-cultural research (pp. 33-41). Athens, Greece: Pedio Books.

Adamopoulos, J., & Pavlopoulos, V. (2010). [Intending as an individual, collective, and cultural process: Basic theoretical considerations. In S. Papastamou, G. Prodromitis, & V. Pavlopoulos (Eds.), Social thought, social cognition, and behavior: Thirty-three Greek social psychologists re-examine their discipline. Athens, Greece: Pedio Books] (in Greek, available in English).

Adamopoulos, J. (2012). The emergence of social meaning: A theory of action construal. In K. Törnblom & A. Kazemi (Eds.). Handbook of social resource theory: Theoretical extensions, empirical insights, and social applications (pp. 255-272). New York: Springer.

Page last modified May 21, 2018