Semiotics of Everyday Activity and Meaning Systems Lab (S.E.A.M.S. Lab): Clark University, USA.

Our lab focuses on ordinary experiences and their extraordinary significant by looking at the “seams” of experience–the location at which our socio-cultural worlds are “sewn” together and constructed. Specifically, our lab looks at the construction of the socio-cultural world through the lens of a cultural psychology of semiotic dynamics.

Members: Jaan Valsiner, Kenneth R. Cabell, Kevin Carriere, Ilana Weiss, Greg Minikes, Curtis Meyer, Olivia Vande Griek.


Developmental Contexts and Trajectories Lab (“The Maternos”): UFBA, Brazil.

In general terms, our research trajectory began with our concern about twofold: (1) the processual nature of development and the construction of a context-sensitive psychology, and (2) the commitment to promoting social change and the personal involvement of the researcher with the poor communities of Salvador Bahia..The group came upon the phenomenon of motherhood which allowed us to study threefold: (1) the developmental transitions (2) immediate ruptures or general shifts in life span and (3) those locations in (1) and (2) where psychological (and social) novelty emerges.  Then, we clarify in which senses we have been using the notions of “context” and “trajectories” along these years, moving from contexts to narratives, and from “culture-inclusive” to Cultural Psychology in its constructivist-semiotic matrix. In doing so, we believe we have reached the phenomena and the approaches that converge with a developmental poetics of living realities.Our primary intent in choosing parenthood as a research subject is to study developmental processes during adulthood, particularly the emergence of psychological novelty. That’s why we have been studying developmental transitions, focusing on becoming mother or father and taking pregnancy and childbirth as critical life events.

Members: Ana Cecilia Bastos


Laboratório de Investigação em Psicoterapia (L.I.P.): ISMAI, Portugal.

LIP was founded by a group of researchers of Psychology at ISMAI (Maia Institute of Higher Education), headed by João Salgado, with the purpose of initiating research activities that would allow the university to be a reference within the national scientific framework of developmental research in psychotherapy, in particular, and human change processes, in general. This group privileges a mixed-method approach, aiming to contribute with new theoretical achievements for the study of developmental and dynamic processes of the self. It privileges idiographic studies, such as intensive case analysis, but also combining these with more sample-based studies. In terms of human resources, LIP has the collaboration of several researchers at ISMAI as well as other national and international external consultants, PhD and master degree students, and also full-time research assistants. It is closely associated with the Masters’ and Doctoral Degrees in Clinical and Health Psychology of ISMAI. In addition to psychotherapy outcome studies, LIP has been developing several process studies with different methodological approaches such as Dialogical Self, Decentering, Assimilation of Problematic Experiences, Distancing and Immersion, Therapeutic Skills, and Empathy. The “ISMAI Depression Project – Decentering and Change Processes in Psychotherapy” stands out as the main research effort. This is an ongoing project of the study of the effectiveness of psychotherapy for mild to moderate depression of clients without medication, supported by the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT). In addition to the research activities at LIP, its group of psychotherapists also developed the Center for Psychological Support Services (CASP), providing counseling and psychological services for adults, children and adolescents, as well as collaboration with families, schools and teachers. This routine practice is also object of research.

Members: João Salgado, Ana Sofia Teixeira, Anita Santos, Carla Cunha, Catarina Almeida, Daniela Nogueira, Eunice Barbosa, Inês Mendes, Isabel Basto, Liliana Meira, Patrícia Pinheiro, Pedro Lourenço, Tiago Bento.

Laboratory of Microgenesis in Social Interactions  (Lab.M.I.S.): University of Brasilia, Brazil.

Members: Maria Claudia Lopes de Oliveira, Diva Maria Maciel, Maristela Rossato, Monica Souza-Neves Pereira, and 19 other masters and doctoral students

Gruppo di Ricerca sulle Interazioni Sociali (G.R.I.S.): University of Salerno, Italy.

Gruppo di Ricerca sulle Interazioni Sociali aims to join and to support researchers and professors of all branches of psychology, who are interested in studying social interaction under its various forms, and it is based at the Department of  Human, Philosophic and Education Sciences  at the University of Salerno. From the 2008 the GRIS is carrying out a research activity coordinated by Prof. Pina  Marsico about social interaction in educational contexts and their relationships with development, identity and psycho-social transitions. The research involves professors, senior researchers and Phd students with expertise in educational and development psychology and ethnographic methodology. Since 2008  GRIS is carrying out a research activity coordinated by Prof. Pina  Marsico about social interaction in educational contexts and their relationships with development, identity and psycho-social transitions. The research involves professors, senior researchers and Phd students with expertise in educational and development psychology and ethnographic methodology.

Members: Please contact Pina Marsico

Laboratório de Interação Verbal e Construção de Conhecimento (L.I.V.C.C.): University of Sao Paulo, Brazil.

The Laboratory, founded in 1991, belongs to the Department of Experimental Psychology, Institute of Psychology, University of São Paulo, Brazil, and is coordinated by Lívia Mathias Simão. It develops research on the processes of knowledge construction based on I-Other relationships, with an emphasis on verbal interactions and symbolic actions involved in cultural transformation. The theoretical framework that guides the research is that of semiotic-cultural Psychology. The research as a whole, seeks to better understand psychological processes of knowledge construction that is contextually situated, to reflections on the ethical implications of these processes and reflections on the historical and philosophical affiliation of semiotic theories. Research branches carried out at LIVCC: (1) History and Philosophy of Psychology; (2) Semiotic-Cultural Constructivism in Psychology; (3) Verbal Interaction and Knowledge Construction; (4) Perspectivism in Cultural Psychology.

Members: Lívia Mathias Simão, Ph.D.; Danilo Silva Guimarães, Ph.D.; Djalma de Freitas; Eloisa Leão; Hernán Sánchez; Juliano Sampaio; Kleber Nigro; Larissa Laskovski; Marcel Lopes; Paula Franciulli; Suara Bastos.

Research Centre in Sociocultural Psychology (R.C.S.P.): Université de Neuchâtel

The Research Centre in Sociocultural Psychology studies the individual’s development in complex social situations that are themselves changing. These studies share a sociocultural and dialogical orientation that invites the examination of human activity and the meaning given to these situations. Current research directions include various theoretical explorations, regarding: imagination; argumentation, reasoning and social interactions; conflict and controversies; agency; as well as related epistemological and methodological reflections. Current research themes include education and vocational training; life trajectories and transitions; arts, religions and science seen from a sociocultural psychological perspective; migration; as well as the empirical articulation of actually thinking and imagining.

Members: Antonio Iannaccone, Anne-Nelly Perret-Clermont, Tania Zittoun, Romain Boissonnade, Stéphanie Breux, Constance de Saint Laurent, Teuta Mehmeti, Céline Miserez-Caperos, Adeline Payot, Andreas von Känel, and some others.