Dr Lisa A. Williams

Dr Lisa A. Williams

Dr Lisa A. Williams

Senior Lecturer

B.A. Psychology, Lewis and Clark College, 2004
M.A. Social Psychology, Northeastern University, 2006
Ph.D. Social Psychology, Northeastern University, 2009

Contact details

Phone: (02) 9385 1643
Email: Dr Lisa A. Williams
Fax: (02) 9385 3641

Office: Mathews, Room 1302a

Research Summary

Research Areas: The influence of social emotions (e.g., pride, gratitude) in intrapersonal domains (goal pursuit, resilience, wellbeing), interpersonal domains (trust, negotiation, leadership), and intergroup domains (status, attitudes, intergroup aggression).

The processes by which expressions of emotion signal traits of the expresser (e.g., gratitude expressions signal interpersonal warmth, pride signals competence) and how inferences of these traits in turn drive interpersonal behavior.

The role of anticipatory, current, and reflected emotions in driving prosocial, community-oriented behavior (e.g., blood donation, voting).

Current Research Projects:
Project: The Emotional Psychology of Blood Donors: Understanding and Using the Effective Key to Donor Return
Project: Positive Emotions and Wellbeing


  • PSYC1001: Introduction to Psychology (1A)
  • PSYC2101: Assessment, Personality & Psychopathology
  • PSYC3121: Social Psychology


in press

  • Williams, L. A. (in press). Beyond the self: Pride felt in relation to others. In J. A. Carter & E. C. Gordon (Eds.), The moral psychology of pride (part of a series: The moral psychology of emotions). Rowman & Littlefield.
  • Williams, L., A. (under contract). Positive socially-oriented emotions. In H. Lench (Ed), The functions of emotion. Springer.


  • Williams, L. A., Schofield, T. P., & Whitford, T. J. (2017). Romantic red: Testing the characteristics of color-attraction effects in a novel paradigm. Collabra: Psychology, 3(1), 10.
  • Crone, D., & Williams, L. A. (2017). Crowdsourcing participants for psychological research in Australia: A test of Microworkers. Australian Journal of Psychology, 69(1), 39-47.


  • Barrett-Cheetham, E., Williams, L. A., & Bednall, T. (2016). A differentiated approach to the link between positive emotion and wellbeing. Journal of Positive Psychology, 11(6), 595-608.
  • Williams, L. A., & Bliss-Moreau, E. (2016). Humans are ultrasocial and emotional. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 39, 39-40.


  • Gooley, S. L., Zadro, L., Williams, L. A., Svetieva, E., & Gonsalkorale, K. (2015) Ostracizing for a reason: A novel source paradigm for examining the nature and consequences of motivated ostracism. Journal of Social Psychology, 155(5), 410-431. doi: 10.1080/00224545.2015.1060933
  • Williams, L. A., & *Barrett-Cheetham, E. (2015). Social psychological perspectives on compassion. In M. Brenner (Ed.), On compassion. Createspace Publishers.
  • Williams, L. A., & Bartlett, M. Y. (2015). Warm thanks: Gratitude expression facilitates social affiliation in new relationships via perceived warmth. Emotion, 15(1), 1-5. doi: 10.1037/emo0000017


  • Masser, B., Smith, G., & Williams, L. A. (2014). Donor research in Australia: Challenges and promise. Transfusion Medicine & Hemotherapy, 41, 296-301. doi: 10.1159/000365016
  • Bliss-Moreau, E., & Williams, L. A. (2014). Tag, you’re it: Affect tagging promotes goal formation and selection. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 37(2), 138-139. doi: 10.1017/S0140525X13001969
  • Williams, L. A., & DeSteno, D. (2014). Building bonds, attaining ambitions, and establishing esteem: How positive emotions serve intrapersonal needs. In J. Gruber & J. T. Moskowitz (Eds.), Positive emotion: Integrating the light sides and dark sides (pp. 206-224). New York: Oxford University Press.

2010 and prior

  • DeSteno, D., Bartlett, M. Y., Baumann, J., Williams, L. A., & Dickens, L. (2010). Gratitude as moral sentiment: Emotion-guided cooperation in economic exchange. Emotion, 2, 289-293. doi: 10.1037/a0017883
  • Williams, L. A., & DeSteno, D. (2010). Pride in parsimony. Emotion Review, 2, 180-181. doi: 10.1177/1754073909355015
  • Dasgupta, N., DeSteno, D., Williams, L. A., & Hunsinger, M. (2009). Fanning the flames of prejudice: The influence of specific incidental emotions on implicit prejudice. Emotion, 9, 585-591. doi: 10.1037/a0015961
  • Williams, L. A., & DeSteno, D. (2009). Pride: Adaptive social emotion or seventh sin? Psychological Science, 20, 284-288. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-9280.2009.02292.x
  • Williams, L. A., & DeSteno, D. (2008). Pride and perseverance: The motivational function of pride. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 94, 1007-1017. doi: 10.1037/0022-3514.94.6.1007

Awards, Fellowships & Grants

CIs: Lisa A. Williams, Barbara Masser  
Partner Organization: Australian Red Cross Blood Service
The emotional psychology of blood donors: Understanding and using the affective key to donor return

CI: Lisa Williams  PI: David DeSteno
To be or not to be proud: Identifying the functionality of pride in intergroup settings
CIs: Rebecca Pinkus, Lisa Williams, Joseph Ciarrochi, Julie Fitness  PI: Sandra Murray
Emotional responses to comparisons in romantic relationships: Implications for relationship wellbeing
CI: Lisa Williams
The role of pride in motivating and maintaining blood donations

Current Research Students

  • PhD: Elizabeth Barrett-Cheetham
  • PhD: Joel Davies
  • PhD: Andrew Wowk
  • Postdoctoral Fellow: Anne van Dongen

Other Information

Eye Gazing: Where People Meet Up To Look Each Other In The Eye. SBS Australia
Various articles. The Conversation
How Embarrassing. Huffington Post Australia’s HuffPost Humans
Loneliness. Monocle’s The Urbanist
Milestones and the Measure of the Moral Life. ABC Radio National's The Minefield

Personal Links

Lab Website: www.williamssocialemotionslab.com
Twitter: @williamslisaphd