My research is predominantly in political psychology and misperceptions of scary things. My PhD focussed on terrorism –The Rationality-Irrationality Nexus in Post-9/11 Framing of Terrorism in Australia – spanning political rhetoric, media discourse, and the causes and consequences of major differences between lay and expert understandings of terrorist violence. The experimental chapter of my thesis became Counterterrorism, Counterframing, and Perceptions of Terrorist (Ir)rationality. My experimental and survey research on shark bite incidents demonstrates that perceptions of intent mediate the effects of fear on support for policies that kill sharks – Shark Bites and Shark Conservation. Forthcoming research ranges from experimental research into gender and ethnic bias; accidental race priming in research employing quota sampling; reporting and misreporting of public opinion polls; and emotional responses to territorial threat cues. 

I am a Postdoctoral Research Associate at the Harvard/Sydney Electoral Integrity Project, led by Pippa Norris, and the Program Manager of the Perceptions of Electoral Integrity expert survey. Recent outputs include: The Year in Elections 2017 Mid-Year Update; the release of the PEI 5.5 expert-level, election-level, and country-level datasets; and an article in The Conversation about the challenges of balancing the tradeoffs between security and inclusion in voter registration. 

Teaching, Semester 2, 2017:
Sessional lecturer - GOVT6119, International Security (Postgraduate).

Beyond academia, I work as a commercial and political consultant, specialising in online messaging and counterframing experiments; play too much online chess; and tweet @ThomasBWynter.

Department of Government and International Relations
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