The Guy in the Picture

My name is Rohan Kapitany. I am a PhD Provisional Candidate studying Psychology at The University of Queensland.

What Make Ideas Worth Believing?

My PhD is broadly focused on understanding the factors which help ideas spread. I am interested in which social, cognitive and biological mechanisms allow ideas to be refined, propagated, and integrated within culture. I hope to address both the proximal causes (what immediate casual factors influence the spread of an idea) and ultimate causes (what in our evolutionary history facilitated the spread of ideas) of this question. As my research progresses I will narrow the scope of enquiry and address a more limited and answerable subset of these questions. Current research is aimed at determining at what point in development children begin to understand the quality and implications of ideas as adults do, and at what point in our biological and cultural history such factors gained traction. My research will examine religious-like thought and ritual, but the principles underlying the uptake and spread of cultural elements ought to be universally applicable.

Science for All!

I believe strongly in open science and in science being communicated well. To that end I will list all published and unpublished data here, and make available all my data. I also hope to make videos explaining all my research (don’t worry, they’ll get better). Finally, I aim to communicate science – specifically psychological science – as clearly as possible. Check out the Science Communication section  of this website – it includes past, present (and hopefully future) projects.


Please feel free to contact me regarding my research, media, data, or research interests. Click here.