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Benedek Kurdi

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Harvard University

Benedek Kurdi

Department of Psychology

I am an experimental psychologist studying implicit social cognition, that is, how we automatically like and dislike members of certain groups, how we automatically attribute positive and negative traits to them, and how such automatic likes and dislikes influence our behavior. I am currently working toward my PhD under the mentorship of Mahzarin R. Banaji at the Harvard Psychology Department. My work has been funded by the Dean's Competitive Fund for Promising Scholarship, the Harvard Graduate School Fund, the Harvard Mind, Brain, and Behavior Initiative, as well as the Stimson Fund, the Restricted Funds, and the Knox Fund at the Harvard Psychology Department. I have published first-authored papers in American PscyhologistBehavior Research Methods, Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, and other outlets. In addition, I have been teaching statistics to psychology students at the undergraduate and graduate levels. I am a two-time recipient of the Derek Bok Center’s Harvard Distinction in Teaching Award.
My main line of work investigates how different kinds of learning (learning based on relationships that we experience in the environment vs. more abstract language-based learning) contribute to the formation of attitudes, especially relatively automatic and uncontrollable implicit attitudes, toward people and things (and, of course, places). I am also the lead author on a large-scale meta-analysis probing to what extent and under what conditions implicit attitudes and stereotypes predict behavior toward members of different social groups. Finally, in a third project, we are exploring the relationship between implicit attitudes (positive and negative evaluations of social groups) and implicit stereotypes (attributions of positive and negative traits to social groups). In past work, I created the Open Affective Standardized Image Set (OASIS) and showed that, under some conditions, the more confident we are, the less likely our memory is to be accurate.  
Before becoming a psychologist, I earned my Bachelor’s degree in German Studies and Theoretical Linguistics from Eotvos Lorand University, Budapest, Hungary. As an undergraduate, I participated in study abroad programs at the Humboldt University of Berlin, Germany, and at Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY. I completed a Master of Arts degree in Political Science at Central European University, Budapest, Hungary, with a specialization in research methodology. For my work at CEU, I received several academic distinctions, including the Departmental Award of Excellence, the Outstanding Academic Achievement Award, and the Best MA Thesis Award.

picture about Benedek Kurdi

Benedek Kurdi

Doctoral Candidate
Department of Psychology
Harvard University


What do I do?

Implicit social cognition and quantitative methods

Current Projects

Completed Projects


The articles are provided to ensure the timely dissemination of scientific information.
In order to download an article, click the PDF button, and in order to obtain raw data files and analysis scripts, click the OSF button.
  • Kurdi, B., Seitchik, A. E., Axt, J. R., Carroll, T. J., Karapetyan, A., Kaushik, N., Tomezsko, D., Greenwald, A. G., & Banaji, M. R. (in press). Relationship between the Implicit Association Test and intergroup behavior: A meta-analysis. American Psychologist. PDF OSF
  • Kurdi, B., Diaz, A. J., Wilmuth, C. A., Friedman, M. C., & Banaji, M. R. (2018). Variations in the relationship between memory confidence and memory accuracy: The effects of spontaneous accessibility, list length, modality, and complexity. Psychology of Consciousness: Theory, Research, and Practice, 5(1), 3–28. PDF OSF
  • Kurdi, B., & Banaji, M. R. (2017). Reports of the death of the individual difference approach to implicit social cognition may be greatly exaggerated: A commentary on Payne, Vuletich, and Lundberg. Psychological Inquiry, 28(4), 281–287. PDF OSF
  • Kurdi, B., & Banaji, M. R. (2017). Repeated evaluative pairings and evaluative statements: How effectively do they shift implicit attitudes? Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 146(2), 194–213. PDF OSF
  • Kurdi, B., Lozano, S., & Banaji, M. R. (2017). Introducing the Open Affective Standardized Image Set (OASIS). Behavior Research Methods, 49(2), 457–470. PDF OSF


Past and present

Catherine Kim

Catherine Kim is an undergraduate at Boston College majoring in Psychology. She is particularly curious about the ways in which language influences our thoughts and shapes the way we think about or perceive something. In the future, she hopes to do research on culture and its effects on human minds.

Catherine Kim

Ruolin Lu

Ruolin Lu is an undergraduate at Boston College majoring in Psychology. She is interested in clinical and social psychology. In the future she would like to pursue a PhD in one of these fields.

Ruolin Lu

Victor Yang

Victor Yang is a sophomore at Harvard University studying computer science. He also has an interest in psychology and the biological sciences. Outside of the classroom, he is part of Harvard's Engineers Without Borders chapter and relaxes by going on his daily runs.

Victor Yang

Ece Hakim

Ece Hakim is an undergraduate at Harvard University. She is concentrating in psychology and planning to pursue a secondary in art history or filmmaking. She is interested in social and developmental psychology. In her free time, she enjoys acting and drawing.

Ece Hakim


Ahmed Izzidien

Dr. Ahmed Izzidien completed his MPhil dissertation at Cambridge University. He holds a BEng (Hons) from King's College London, an MSc from UMIST, and a PhD from Cardiff. His interests include cognitive neuroscience, electroencephalography, and cognition in religion and politics.

Ahmed Izzidien

Preethi Raju

Preethi Raju is a sophomore student at the University of Chicago studying biology and economics. Her interests range from social psychology to medicine to tennis to classical Indian dance. She hopes to go to medical school in the future. 

Preethi Raju

Sarah Ryan

Sarah Ryan is an undergraduate at Harvard University. She is concentrating in psychology with a minor in economics. She is interested in social and developmental psychology. In the future, she would like to do social psychological research with a focus on education inequality interventions.

Sarah Ryan

Shayn Lozano

Shayn Lozano

Harrison Satcher

Harrison Satcher is an undergraduate at Harvard University. He studies psychology, and has interests in statistics and computer science. In his free time he enjoys creative writing and weightlifting. In the future, he would like to work in academia.

Harrison Satcher

Harry Lee-Rubin

Harry Lee-Rubin is an undergraduate at Harvard University. He plans to concentrate in psychology. Current interests include cross-modality in implicit cognition, music cognition, and embodiment. He is from Brooklyn, New York. In his free time you might find him playing didgeridoo or scribbling in his diary.

Harry Lee-Rubin






The latest


from Kurdiland
News, announcements, and calls

  1. Student Poster Award

    My submission "Evaluative statements are more effective than evaluative pairings in shifting implicit attitudes" (co-authored with my advisor Mahzarin Banaji) has been selected as a finalist for the 2016 Student Poster Award competition at the Annual Convention of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, to be held in San Diego, CA, in January.

  2. Call for RAs

    I am looking for undergraduate research assistants starting in the Spring semester of the 2015/2016 academic year.

    My work

    In my main line of work, I am investigating how different kinds of learning (learning based on relationships that we experience in the environment vs. more abstract, language-based, learning) contribute to the formation of attitudes, especially relatively automatic and uncontrollable implicit attitudes, towards people and things. Online data collection for this project has been ongoing since January 2015 and is expected to continue throughout the academic year. In addition to my main line of work, I have secondary interests in quantitative methods and metacognition.

    Your contribution

    Hours are completely flexible but a weekly commitment of at least 10 hours is expected. I am looking for research assistants who are genuinely interested in empirical research and are willing to work hard in a fast-paced lab with high expectations in terms of quality. Research assistants could get involved with research design and idea development, background research and literature reviews, stimulus construction, study creation and coding, participant recruitment, and data collection (both online and in person). Programming experience (especially HTML, JavaScript, R, and Python) and/or prior experience involving psychological research are desirable but not necessary.


    Harvard undergraduates may work in the lab as volunteers, in exchange for course credit, or possibly in exchange for payment. Undergraduates from other universities may work in the lab as volunteers.

    How to express interest

    Interested students should send a cover letter (stating why and on which project you would like to work with me), an up-to-date CV/resume, and a short academic writing sample (of about 500 words) to

  3. SPSP poster

    You can download my poster for SPSP 2016 comparing the effects of evaluative pairings and evaluative statements on implicit attitudes from here.

  4. Blog post on OASIS

    The OASIS stimulus set (by myself, Shayn Lozano, and Mahzarin Banaji) was featured in a blog post on the website of the Psychonomic Society.
  5. APS poster

    My APS poster Moderators of the Confidence–Accuracy Relationship in Recognition Memory, with collaborators Alex Diaz, Caroline Wilmuth, Michael Friedman, and Mahzarin Banaji, is available for download from the Open Science Framework.
  6. Talk on acquiring implicit attitudes

    You can watch my recent talk on how implicit attitudes are acquired here.
  7. Teaching Award

    I received the Certificate of Distinction in Teaching from the Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning at Harvard University. The award ceremony took place on April 13, 2017.
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Contact Me

get in touch

Benedek Kurdi, M.A.
Harvard University
Department of Psychology
William James Hall 1580
33 Kirkland St
Cambridge, MA 02138
(617) 528-8599

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Do you want to hear more about my research?
Would you like to discuss a new idea with me?
Are you interested in working with me as a research assistant?
Send me an email.