KEYNOTE SPEAKERS

CHRISTIAN BERGER, PhD, is an Associate professor at the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, where he serves as the Director of the Doctoral Program in Psychology. His research interests focus around peer relations, in particular how social status and aggressive and prosocial behaviors are part of the adolescent peer culture. He also focuses on how contexts affect the development of positive or negative interpersonal relationships. More broadly, he studies peer ecologies and school environments, and protective factors to prevent school violence and to promote a nurturing school social climate.

CHRISTINA SALMIVALLI, PhD, is a Professor of psychology at the University of Turku, Finland. She has done research on bullying and its evidence-based prevention for 25 years. Professor Salmivalli is the principal investigator of the evaluation of the KiVa antibullying program, which was developed in her team with funding from the Finnish Ministry of Education and Culture. The KiVa program has been awarded both nationally and internationally, and is widely implemented in Finland and elsewhere. Salmivalli has published numerous widely cited research articles, book chapters, and books on the topics of children’s peer relations and school bullying. Her current research interests include the effectiveness of different approaches to tackle bullying, the sustainability of the implementation of prevention programs, and the mechanisms of program effects.

DORTE MARIE SØNDERGAARD, D.phil., Professor in social psychology at the School of Education, Aarhus University, and director of the research program (Dis)Engaging Children and Young People. She headed the interdisciplinary research team eXbus: Exploring Bullying in School which conceptualized bullying as an effect of heterogeneously combining social, discursive, digital and subjective forces in children’s and young people’s everyday lives. Søndergaard has co-edited School Bullying: New Theories in Context (Cambridge University Press), and published a range of articles on bullying, e.g. ‘Bullying and social exclusion anxiety in schools’; ‘The thrill of bullying’; ‘New materialist analyses of virtual gaming, distributed violence and relational aggression’; and ‘The Dilemmas of Victim Positioning’.

KEVIN KUMASHIRO, PhD, is an internationally recognized expert on educational policy, school reform, teacher preparation, and educational equity and social justice, with a wide-ranging list of accomplishments and awards as a scholar, educator, leader, and advocate. He is the former Dean of the School of Education at the University of San Francisco, and is the award-winning author or editor of ten books, including Against Common Sense: Teaching and Learning toward Social Justice, and Bad Teacher!: How Blaming Teachers Distorts the Bigger Picture. His recent awards include the 2016 Social Justice in Education Award from the American Educational Research Association, and an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters.  Website

MICHAEL KYOBE, PhD is a Professor of Information Systems and Deputy Dean for research & Internationalization in the Commerce faculty at the University of Cape Town. Michael is a rated researcher by the South Africa National Research Foundation (NRF) and his research focuses on mobile bullying, security, ICT Legislation, alignment and governance. He is the Principal Investigator for the mobile bullying project funded by the South African National Research Foundation.

RENÉ VEENSTRA, Professor of Sociology, University of Groningen, the Netherlands. He is the director of the Interuniversity Center for Social Science Theory and Methodology (ICS). He was a Visiting Professor at the Department of Psychology, University of Turku, Finland for the period 2007-2011 and Associate Editor of the Journal of Research on Adolescence for the period 2010-2016. He coordinated the implementation and evaluation of the KiVa Antibullying Program in the Netherlands. In 2015 he was awarded a prestigious VICI grant (EUR 1.5 million). He published on a variety of topics, including bullying and victimization, peer relations, and social network analysis. His website: www.rene-veenstra.nl

SHELLEY HYMEL holds the Edith Lando Professorship in Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) in the Faculty of Education at the University of British Columbia. She promotes SEL through a specialized Masters program and through Teacher Education and  created a unique online resource for educators, the SEL Resource Finder (www.selrecources.com). She is co-founder of the Bullying Research Network (http://brnet.unl.edu/), linking nearly 200 researchers from countries around the world. She is part of the executive team of PREVNet (www.prevnet.ca), Canada’s national organization for “Promoting Relationships and Eliminating Violence,” She publishes extensively on social development, peer relations, and has worked directly with students experiencing social difficulties and with school districts that want to address the social side of education.

SHOKO YONEYAMA, PhD, is a Senior Lecturer in Asian Studies, University of Adelaide. She has worked extensively in the field of sociology of comparative education, and is recognised internationally as the author of The Japanese High School: Silence and Resistance (Routledge), a comparative study of student perceptions of school in Japan and Australia. She has published widely on youth issues, including bullying and school non-attendance. She is currently working on a book: Animism in Contemporary Japan (Routledge), addressing questions of human-nature relationships and spirituality from the perspective of post-Fukushima Japan.

SUSAN SWEARER is the Willa Cather Professor of Educational Psychology at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln and a licensed psychologist. She co-founded and co-directs the Bullying Research Network (http://cehs.unl.edu/brnet), directs the Empowerment Initiative (http://cehs.unl.edu/empowerment), and is coauthor/coeditor of the books: Bullying Prevention and Intervention: Realistic Strategies for Schools, Handbook of Bullying in Schools and Bullying in North American Schools. Dr. Swearer has authored over 100 chapters and articles on bullying prevention and intervention, depression, and anxiety among youth and young people. She is the chair of the Research Advisory Board for Lady Gaga’s Born This Way Foundation (www.bornthisway.foundation).

Dr. PETER SMITH’s research interest is children’s social development, and he was Head of the Unit for School and Family Studies in the Department of Psychology at Goldsmith’s from 1998 to 2011. He received his B.Sc at the University of Oxford and his PhD from the University of Sheffield; following his doctorate he continued at the University of Sheffield, obtaining a Personal Chair in 1991, before moving to Goldsmiths College in 1995. Dr. Smith is a Fellow of the British Psychological Society, the Association of Psychological Sciences, and the Academy of Social Sciences. His most extensive research has been on bullying and violence in schools, where he has led a number of research projects. He was the Chair of the European Cooperation in Science and Technology Cyberbullying Action (COST ACTION IS0801) from 2008-2012, and was PI of a project Bullying, Cyberbullying, and Pupil Safety and Wellbeing, financed by the Indian-European Research Networking in the Social sciences initiative (2012-2015). He is currently co-PI of a project Comparative study of cyberbullying in Qatar and the UK: risk factors, impact on health and solutions, financed by the Qatar National Research Fund (2013-2016). Publications include the edited collections (with Dr. Debra Pepler and Dr. Ken Rigby) Bullying in Schools: How Successful can Interventions be? (Cambridge University Press, 2004); (with Dr. Qing Li and Dr. Donna Cross) Cyberbullying in the Global Playground: Research from International Perspectives (Wiley-Blackwell, 2012); (with Dr. Georges Steffgen) Cyberbullying through the New media: Findings from an International Network (Psychology Press, 2013) and (with Dr. Keumjoo Kwak and Dr. Yuichi Toda) School Bullying in Different Cultures: Eastern and Western Perspectives (Cambridge University Press, 2016). He is also author of Understanding School Bullying: Its Nature and Prevention Strategies (Sage, 2014), and Adolescence: A Very Short Introduction (OUP, 2016). In 2015 he was awarded the William Thierry Preyer award for Excellence in Research on Human Development, by the European Society for Developmental Psychology.

PhD. EVA ROMERO is Associate Professor at the Department of Psychology at the University of Córdoba (Spain). She is Director of the Master in Applied Psychology in Education and Social Well-being and member of the International Observatory of School Violence. She has been involved in the analysis of psychosocial risk factors associated with the involvement in school violence and peer victimization. She has also experience in working in training programmes in schools. She currently holds Principal Investigator position in a nation-wide study on longitudinal analysis of social and emotional traits related to bullying and cyberbullying and PI of an European project (H2020) about development of social competence in children to promote well-being and mental health.

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