Professor Paul Harris FBA


Elected 1998

Fellow type
UK Fellow
Year elected

Paul Harris is a developmental psychologist with interests in the development of cognition, emotion and imagination. After studying psychology at Sussex and Oxford, he taught at the University of Lancaster, the Free University of Amsterdam and the London School of Economics. In 1980, he moved to Oxford where he became Professor of Developmental Psychology and Fellow of St John's College. In 2001, he migrated to Harvard where he holds the Victor S. Thomas Professorship of Education. For 2006-2007, he received a Guggenheim award. He currently studies how young children learn about history, science and religion on the basis of what trusted informants tell them. His latest book 'Trusting what you're told: How children learn from others' describing this research, was published by Harvard University Press (May, 2012). It has received the Eleanor Maccoby award from the American Psychological Association and the Book Award of the Cognitive Development Society. In 2015, he was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Current post

Victor S Thomas Professorship of Education, Harvard University

Past appointments

Harvard University Professor of Education

2001 -

Other Foreign Institutions Victor S. Thomas Professorship of Education, Harvard University

2001 -

University of Oxford Professor of Developmental Psychology

1998 - 2001

St John's College University of Oxford Fellow

1981 - 2001


Trusting what you're told: How children learn from others 2012

Children and emotion 1989

The work of the imagination 2000

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