AGYA Member

Laith Al-Shawaf


Areas of Expertise for Media Inquiries:
Evolutionary Psychology, Cognition and Emotion

About me

I am an Assistant Professor of Psychology at Bilkent University in Turkey and a Visiting Fellow at the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin (also known as the Institute for Advanced Study). Along with collaborators based in the United States, Australia, Croatia, Malta, Finland, and Germany, I conduct within-culture and cross-cultural research on human cognition and emotion.

My primary goal in AGYA is to use principles and findings from psychology and neuroscience to improve education in Germany and the Arab world. I am particularly interested in strengthening the way we teach young people science and philosophy.

I would also like to use my membership in AGYA to contribute to increased exchange between scholars and students from different parts of the world, facilitating cross-border cooperation and cross-cultural collaboration rather than divisions along national and ethnic lines.

Current projects


  • Member of the AGYA Working Group Arab and German Education
  • The evolution of the human brain: implications for philosophy (book project)
  • Directing cross-cultural research projects on cognition and emotion

Academic Career

2015 - Assistant Professor, Bilkent University
2015 -
Visiting Fellow, Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin (Institute for Advanced Study)
2011 -
Instructor, Johns Hopkins University’s Center for Talented Youth
2015 Instructor, American University of Beirut
2009 -
Ph.D., University of Texas at Austin

Selected Publications


  • Lewis, D.M.G., Al-Shawaf, L., Janiak, M., & Akunebu, S. (in press). Integrating molecular genetics and evolutionary psychology: Sexual jealousy and the androgen receptor (AR) gene. Personality and Individual Differences.
  • Al-Shawaf, L., Conroy-Beam, D., Asao, K., & Buss, D.M. (2015). Human emotions: An evolutionary psychological perspective. Emotion Review, 1-14.
  • Al-Shawaf, L., Lewis, D.M.G., & Buss, D.M. (2015). Disgust and mating strategy. Evolution & Human Behavior, 36, 199-205.
  • Lewis, D.M.G., Al-Shawaf, L., Conroy-Beam, D., Asao, K., & Buss, D. M. (in press). Evolutionary Psychology: A How-To Guide. American Psychologist.

see a full list of publications>


Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin & Bilkent University, Department of Psychology

Wallotstraße 19 14193 Berlin Germany

+90 312 290 3415

visit profile at home institute >

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