Peace Studies

Johanna Vollhardt

Johanna Ray Vollhardt, Ph.D.

Associate Professor
Department of Psychology
Clark University
Worcester, MA 01610-1477

Phone: 508.793.7278

Curriculum Vitae
Professional Website


Dr. Vollhardt received a Diplom (German equivalent to B.A. and M.A. combined) in Psychology from the University of Cologne in 2004. She received a Ph.D. in Social Psychology (with a concentration in the Psychology of Peace and Violence) from the University of Massachusetts Amherst in May 2009. She joined Clark University in September 2009.

Current Research and Teaching

Dr. Vollhardt’s research focuses on the psychological impact of collective victimization on relations with members of other groups, opinions on social and political issues, and psychological well-being. Her current research projects include developing measures of inclusive and exclusive victim consciousness, the psychological consequences of acknowledgment (versus denial) of collective victimization, resistance during the Holocaust, and media-based reconciliation interventions. Dr. Vollhardt conducts this research using multiple methods (e.g., experiments, field experiments, surveys, content analysis, archival research, interviews, focus groups) and working with various ethnic, religious and national (minority) groups in the U.S., Europe, South Asia, and East Africa. She is a co-editor of the Journal of Social and Political Psychology.

Dr. Vollhardt currently teaches courses on research methods, social psychology, and on the social psychology of intergroup relations, ethnic conflict and genocide.

Selected Publications:

(Please contact for reprint inquiries)

Vollhardt, J.R. (2016). The role of social psychology in preventing group-selective mass atrocities. In S. Rosenberg, T. Galis, & A. Zucker (Eds.),Reconstructing atrocity prevention (pp. 95-124). New York: Cambridge University Press.

Vollhardt, J.R., Nair, R., & Tropp, L. (in press). Inclusive victim consciousness predicts minority group members’ support for refugees and immigrants. Journal of Applied Social Psychology.

Vollhardt, J.R., & Campbell-Obaid., M. (in press). The social psychology of genocide and mass atrocities. In A. Miller (Ed.), The social psychology of good and evil (2nd ed.). Guilford Press.

Vollhardt, J. R., Bilewicz, M., & Olechowski, M. (2015). Victims under siege: Lessons for Polish-Jewish relations and beyond. In K. Sharvit & E. Halperin (Eds.), The social psychology of intractable conflicts - celebrating the legacy of Daniel Bar-Tal, volume I (pp. 75-87). New York: Springer.

Moss, S. M., & Vollhardt, J.R. (in press). “You can’t give a syringe with unity”: Rwandan responses to the government’s single recategorization policies. Analyses of Social Issues and Public Policy.

Mazur, L., & Vollhardt, J. R. (in press). The prototypicality of genocide: Implications for international interventions. Analyses of Social Issues and Public Policy.

Bilali, R., Vollhardt, J.R., & Rarick, J. R. D. (in press). Assessing the impact of a media-based intervention to prevent intergroup violence and promote positive intergroup relations in Burundi. Journal of Community and Applied Social Psychology.

Cohrs, J. C., McNeill, A., & Vollhardt, J. R. (in press). The two-sided role of inclusive victimhood for intergroup reconciliation: Evidence from Northern Ireland. Peace and Conflict: Journal of Peace Psychology.

Bilali, R., & Vollhardt, J.R. (in press). Can mass media interventions effectively promote peace in contexts of ongoing violence? Evidence from Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. Peace and Conflict: Journal of Peace Psychology.

Vollhardt, J.R. & Bilali, R. (2015). The role of inclusive and exclusive victim consciousness in predicting intergroup attitudes: Findings from Rwanda, Burundi, and DRC. Political Psychology, 36, 489-506.

Vollhardt, J.R. (2015). Inclusive victim consciousness in advocacy, social movements, and intergroup relations: Promises and pitfalls. Social Issues and Policy Review, 9, 89-120.

Vollhardt, J.R., Mazur, L.B., & Lemahieu, M. (2014). Acknowledgment after mass violence: Effects on psychological well-being and intergroup relations. Group Processes and Intergroup Relations, 17, 306-323.

Campbell, M. & Vollhardt, J.R. (2014). Fighting the good fight: The relationship between belief in evil and support for violent policies. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 40, 16-33.

Bilali, R., & Vollhardt, J.R. (2013). Priming effects of a reconciliation radio drama on historical perspective taking in the aftermath of mass violence in Rwanda. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 49, 144-151.

Vollhardt, J.R. (2013). “Crime against humanity” or “Crime against Jews”? Acknowledgment in construals of the Holocaust and its importance for intergroup relations. Journal of Social Issues, 69, 144-161.

Vollhardt, J.R. & Bilewicz, M. (2013). After the genocide: psychological perspectives on victim, bystander, and perpetrator groups. Journal of Social Issues, 69, 1-15.

Vollhardt, J. R. (2012). Collective victimization. In L. Tropp (Ed.), Oxford handbook of intergroup conflict (pp. 136 - 157). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Bilewicz, M., & Vollhardt, J. R. (2012). Evil transformations: Psychological processes underlying genocide and mass killing. In A. Golec De Zavala & A. Cichocka (Eds.), Social psychology of social problems. The intergroup context (pp. 280 - 307). New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan.

Vollhardt, J.R. (2012). Interpreting rights and duties after mass violence. Culture and Psychology, 18, 133-145.

Vollhardt, J.R. (2009). Altruism born of suffering and prosocial behavior following adverse life events: A review and conceptual integration. Social Justice Research, 22, 53-97.

Vollhardt, J. & Bilali, R. (2008). Social psychology’s contribution to the psychological study of peace: A review. Social Psychology, 39, 12-25.