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I joined the SGDP centre in 2017 as a Newton International Fellow working on a project entitled “Investigating the self in self-other control: the neural basis of (overcoming) egocentric bias”.  

After conducting research on mentalizing while engaging with literary fiction at the Donders Institute (Radboud University Nijmegen, the Netherlands), I continued to do a PhD project on the topic of spontaneous mentalizing in adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) at Ghent University, Belgium.  

Generally, my research interests focus on the behavioural and neural processes underlying how we engage and interact with others, and how we distinguish the ‘self’ from the ‘other’. I am particularly interested in the similarities and differences in these processes between individuals with ASD and neurotypical individuals. 

Research interests: 

  • Autism Spectrum Disorder 
  • Social Cognition 
  • Electro-encephalography 

Research groups:

Team of Prof Dr Geoff Bird 

Expertise and Public Engagement:

My research has been discussed in newspapers and on the radio, and I have written two articles for popular science magazines 

Key publications:

Nijhof, A.D., Bardi, L., Brass, M., & Wiersema, J.R. (2018). Brain Activity for Spontaneous and Explicit Mentalizing in Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder: An fMRI Study. NeuroImage: Clinical, 18, 475 – 484. 

Nijhof, A.D., Dhar, M., Goris, J., Brass, M., & Wiersema, J.R. (2018). Atypical Neural Responding to Hearing One’s Own Name in Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 127(1), 129-138.