Nickola Overall co-leads the REACH group at the University of Auckland. Her research interests focus on identifying the factors that determine the relative success of different communication strategies used when couples are trying to resolve relationship problems or support each other. She also examines how depression, attachment insecurities and sexist attitudes impact relationship functioning, and the relationship and family processes that exacerbate or overcome these difficulties. [Read More]

Jessica Maxwell co-leads the REACH group at the University of Auckland. Her research examines how key principles of social cognition inform relational and sexual well-being, and how interdependent relationship processes uniquely inform theoretical perspectives on social cognition.  In particular, she assesses how individual differences in expectations and perceptions influence sexual and relationship well-being, examining factors such as how individuals expect they can best maintain sexual satisfaction, what they expect from casual sex encounters, and how accurate they are in detecting their partners’ feelings and sexual preferences. [Read More]



Valerie Chang completed her PhD in 2020 and is now managing the Family Resilience and Wellbeing Study. Her main area of research focuses on how depression and rumination shape how individuals respond within interpersonal relationships and the interpersonal processes that sustain depression across time, such as biased perceptions and memories. [Read More]



Rachel Low completed her PhD in 2018 and is now a Lecturer/Assistant Professor at the Auckland University of Technology. Her primary research involves examining emotion regulation processes within family contexts. Her research includes investigating the predictors and consequences of emotion regulation strategies for adults, couples and children. Rachel studies how emotion regulation strategies shape adult relationship interactions, such as when people are striving to achieve personal goals and need support or when couples are managing conflict. Rachel also examines how emotion regulation processes within couples’ interactions spill over to affect how parents interact with their children. Rachel is also interested in investigating how parents’ emotion regulation strategies influence children’s emotional experiences and regulation abilities. [Read More]


Caitlin McRae started her PhD in 2018 in the REACH and ELLA Labs. Her research focuses on the role of coparenting following conflict in order to uncover factors that influence the relationship between parental conflict and child outcomes. In particular, Caitlin is testing whether supportive coparenting attenuates the potentially harmful effects of conflict spill-over on children. [Read More]

Camille Reid completed her PhD at the University of Auckland in 2020. Her research examines the characteristics of partners that help buffer attachment insecurities in relationships. This involves examining how high self-esteem, low neuroticism and contextual empathic inaccuracy make partners more effective at softening highly avoidant and/or highly anxious defenses within intimate relationships. [Read More]

Auguste Harrington is currently completing his PhD. His main area of research focuses on how masculinity and gender roles influence functioning within intimate relationships. [Read more].



Eri Sasaki is currently completing her PhD.  Her research interests focus on a range of intra-personal and inter-personal processes that determine how people respond to relationship conflict and the long-term consequences of these different responses for relationship wellbeing.  [Read More]



Nina Waddell started her PhD in the REACH lab mid-2019. Her research focuses on the ways in which sexism within the context of intimate relationships affects the decisions people make regarding their own personal ambitions. [Read More]



matthewMatthew Hammond completed his PhD in the REACH Lab in 2015, and is now a lecturer (assistant professor) at Victoria University of Wellington. His primary research involves how gender, power and sexist stereotypes influence relationship functioning. His research has demonstrated how sexist stereotypes can influence behaviours and perceptions within relationships in ways that reinforce gender inequality. [Read More]

ygirmeYuthika Girme completed her PhD in the REACH Lab in 2015, and is now an assistant professor at Simon Fraser University. Her primary research goals involve identifying the ways people can effectively provide support and generate closeness in their romantic relationships. Her research focuses on how contextual factors and partners’ relationship insecurities can help explain when providing support can be beneficial or costly. [Read More]

Emily Cross received her PhD in March 2019 and is now a Post-doctoral Research Fellow at York University in Toronto, Canada. Her primary areas of research focus on the intersection between social attitudes, individual differences and functioning within close, intimate relationships. This includes research examining the impact of sexist attitudes, attachment insecurity and power dynamics. [Read More]

Shanuki Jayamaha received her PhD in June 2019 and is now the Social Research Coordinator in the School of Psychology at the University of Auckland. Shanuki’s research explores the factors that determine the success of different strategies couples use to resolve relationship problems, and investigates the dispositions of support providers that undermine the effectiveness of support in close relationships. [Read More]