Cyberpsychology Research Network
As a discipline, Cyberpsychology is concerned with the impact of emerging technologies on human behaviour. Cyberpsychologists study human interactions with social media, mobile technologies, games consoles, virtual reality, artificial intelligence and any other technology that has the potential to shape human behaviours. The field is rapidly evolving from an “emerging” to an “established” field within applied psychology. As the three-volume Encyclopaedia of Cyber Behavior (Yan, 2012) notes “Approximately thirty peer-reviewed journals now publish over 1,000 articles every year on topics related to Cyberpsychology”… this field is expected to enjoy exponential growth in the next decades due to both continued rapid growth of Internet technologies and the unprecedentedly pervasive and profound influence of the internet on human beings” (Yan, 2012, p.7).
Psychology of Cyberspace
Researchers from all branches of psychology are currently interested in cyberspace, including cognitive, social, educational, organisational, clinical and experimental psychologists. As psychology delves deeper into cyberspace there are a number of questions that should be considered. Will traditional concepts and theories be sufficient in terms of understanding cyber behaviours? Will we need to modify current theories or develop new ones? – arguably knowledge from traditional psychology might not be sufficient, hence the necessity to broaden scientific investigation. Scholars from psychology and related fields who join the field of Cyberpsychology will undoubtedly contribute to crystallising new ideas and conquering a new scientific frontier (Barak & Suler, 2008).
Cyberpsychology is a rapidly evolving discipline at the leading edge of human/technology interaction. The Cyberpsychology Research Network has been established by Professor Mary Aiken to operate as a virtual hub at the forefront of an important new international field, that has major implications for healthcare delivery, public safety, education, personal and community development.
Internationally collaborative, projects to date have developed a substantial network of researchers from institutions such as University College Dublin Geary Institute for Social Policy, Middlesex University, FDE Institute of Mantua, LUMSA University Rome, Kore University of Enna, Tilburg University in the Netherlands, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard University, including research partners from the Hague Justice Portal, INTERPOL, the Garda Síochána Metropolitan Police Service of London, Los Angeles Police Department, the Australian Federal Police, as well as liaising with the European Commission and the White House. The Cyberpsychology Research Network will progress these collaborations further in the production of research and thought leadership, inspiring policy formation, education and intervention at the intersection of psychology and technology.