Universiteit Leiden

nl en

Mariska Kret

Professor Cognitive Psychology

Prof.dr. M.E. Kret
+31 71 527 6359

Mariska Kret is professor at Cognitive Psychology, Leiden University (The Netherlands).

More information about Mariska Kret

Short CV

Mariska Kret works as professor at Leiden University, Cognitive Psychology unit and leads the CoPAN lab (Comparative Psychology and Affective Neuroscience) which consists of six PhD students and a postdoc (from six different countries). More information about CoPAN can be found at www.mariskakret.com or on the CoPANLeiden Facebook page. 

After obtaining two Psychology Masters in Leiden, Dr. Kret started her PhD trajectory in 2007 in Tilburg during which she studied the perception of body language. In 2011, she moved to Japan to study similar phenomena in chimpanzees. From investigations on expressions in healthy people, her research has expanded to comparative studies in great apes and patients with mental disorders. She is particularly interested in expressions that are genuine, beyond control and automatic. With aid of the prestigious VENI grant from NWO, she studies pupil size, which is influenced by emotions.

CV in pdf


In her VENI project, she investigates emotion processing, pupil-mimicry, their neurophysiological underpinnings and implications for social decision making in humans as well as in great apes.

Her VIDI project is about 'Disconnected and distrusting: Emotional deficits in social anxiety disorder and autism spectrum disorder.'

Supervised PhD candidates

  • 2018 postdoc Yena Kim on project “Cooperation. A comparison between chimpanzees, bonobos and humans. Starts in October (2 years) 
  • 2015 - 2017 Visiting postdoc Francois Quesque. With IBRO grant. 
  • 2016 - present Principal supervisor of PhD student Evy van Berlo on the project “The evolutionary roots of discrimination”. Expected date of defense March 2021 (4.5 years).
  • 2019 - present Principal supervisor of PhD student Julia Folz on the project "Emotional contagion in patients with autism and social anxiety disorder". 
  • 2019 - present Principal supervisor of PhD student Fabiola Diana on the project "Emotional mimicry and physiological synhrony in dyadic interaction, a multi-method approach."
  • 2019 - present Principal supervisor of PhD sltudent Tom Roth on the project "Tinder for orangutans: long-distance tasks to measure partner preferences of zoo-housed orangutans (Pongo spp)."

Professor Cognitive Psychology

  • Faculteit der Sociale Wetenschappen
  • Instituut Psychologie
  • Cognitieve Psychologie

Work address

Pieter de la Court
Wassenaarseweg 52
2333 AK Leiden
Room number 2B11a



  • Brill Editor in Chef journal 'Behavior'
  • Cognition Behavior Evolution Network Chair
This website uses cookies.  More information.