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Over PLN 2.7M from the National Science Centre for Our Researchers

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Over PLN 2.7M from the National Science Centre for Our Researchers

Researchers from SWPS University have been awarded research grants, worth over PLN 2.7 million from the National Science Centre. Thanks to the grants, our scholars from the Institute of Psychology and the Institute of Social Sciences will research multidimensional structure of work-family and family-work conflict, the role of psychological flexibility in meaning-reconstruction in people suffering from cancer, everyday moral dilemma between honesty and deception, and actually-existing democratic values and their consequences in Poland. The NCN grant recipients include: Professor Aleksandra Kroemeke, Professor Benjamin Stanley, Dr. Katarzyna Canterero, and Dr. Ewelina Smoktunowicz.

Meaning-reconstruction process in cancer: the role of psychological flexibility. Intensive longitudinal and experimental studies

Cancer often causes many losses that oscillate over time and require adaptation. These losses can impede an individual's sense of meaning, hence restoring meaning is an important element of adapting to the disease. Two mechanisms play a crucial role in the process of restoring meaning. The first one is related to the process of searching for meaning and explanations for adversities (i.e. meaning-making in disease). The second one refers to benefit finding (or meanings made) in the disease (i.e. the perception of positive changes resulting from coping with disease), and is the result of searching for meaning. Although the meaning-reconstruction process was described in the integrative meaning-making model of coping, this concept has not been completely verified.

Therefore, the objective of Professor Aleksandra Kroemeke’s project is a deeper understanding of the meaning-making process in cancer. The study proposes a new theoretical model, extending the meaning-making model with the model of psychological flexibility. Psychological flexibility is defined as aiming at valued goals in a difficult situation despite suffering. Creating flexibility should foster meaning-making in disease by building more flexible and workable meaning-making explanations of the disease. Professor Kroemeke will examine whether psychological flexibility may be the missing mechanism for the meaning reconstruction process.

Partisan bias or a climate of indifference? An investigation of actually-existing democratic values and their consequences in Poland.

In recent years researchers of democracy have drawn attention to a paradoxical situation in which voters declare a commitment to liberal democracy while supporting political elites who take undemocratic actions. While a majority of citizens say that they prefer democracy over other forms of government and declare a preference for the independence of democratic institutions from political control, the rise of populist parties and movements across the democratic world suggests that voters are more tolerant of illiberal political systems than their declared values might lead us to expect.

Therefore, the goal of Professor Benjamin Stanley’s project is to better understand the relation between democratic values and voter preferences in Poland. The project will seek to answer three research questions: (a) whether Poles genuinely value the norms and institutions of liberal democracy, (b) whether Poles regard the post-2015 changes as a process of democratic backsliding, as the pursuit of an alternative model of democracy, or as simply a continuation of ‘politics as usual’, and (c) whether the political polarization Poland has experienced in recent years adversely affects the capacity of voters to hold illiberal political elites responsible for their actions.

Going beyond the trolley dilemma. Determinants and consequences of an everyday moral dilemma between honesty and deception

Recently, there have been many discussions on the nature of moral judgments and the limitations related to the traditional sacrificial dilemmas. In this project, Dr. Katarzyna Cantarero goes beyond the traditional sacrificial dilemmas (e.g., is it acceptable to kill one person to save five others) and focus on everyday moral dilemmas between honesty and deception.

She will not be focusing on what moral decisions people should make, but rather on what factors influence moral judgements. The researcher will study not only the dilemma between deception and honesty, but also the consequences of the dilemma. Given that a body of research has shown that self-centered and prosocial dishonesty differ significantly when it comes to both its determinants and consequences, she will focus on two types of deception in the project. Moral rules and duties are embedded in social relations, hence the moral dilemma will be analysed in an interpersonal context.

Multidimensional structure of work-family and family-work conflict: does it matter? Consequences for stress, and job and family satisfaction.

Balancing multiple life roles might ignite a conflict between work and family domains. Research findings have shown that this conflict can go in two directions: it is called work-family conflict (WFC) when it is work domain that interferes with family life, and family-work conflict (FWC) when family domain interferes with work. Both of these conflicts are said to be comprised with three dimensions: time-based, strain-based and behavior-based. In the first case, dedicating certain amount of time to perform activities in one role prevents spending time on activities in another. Strain-based dimension means that when we spend energy in one role we might not have enough left to cope with demands in other life areas. Finally, behavior–based conflict may happen when our behaviors are rewarded in one role but unwelcome in others. We know that both women and men—perhaps contrary to common opinion—experience work-family and family-work conflict but that sometimes their experiences might differ.

With this project Dr. Ewelina Smoktunowicz hopes to gain a better understanding of how work-family and family-work conflict relates to well-being. She will find out whether multidimensional structure of the conflict between roles matters and how the conflict can be reduced in an effective and beneficial way for both partners in a couple.

Currently, researchers from SWPS University are conducting over 220 projects, worth close to PLN 110M (over EUR 24M). We owe this success to the effectiveness of our Office for Research and the commitment of our scientists.

Piotr Metejek, Director of the Office for Research

Research Projects Awarded in the Last Edition of the NCN Competition

Professor Aleksandra Kroemeke
Institute of Psychology

  • Meaning-reconstruction process in cancer: the role of psychological flexibility. Intensive longitudinal and experimental studies
  • Competition: OPUS 20
  • Grant amount: PLN 731,284

Professor Benjamin Stanley
Institute of Social Sciences

  • Partisan bias or a climate of indifference? An investigation of actually-existing democratic values and their consequences in Poland
  • Competition: OPUS 20
  • Grant amount: PLN 783,228

Dr. Katarzyna Cantarero
Institute of Psychology

  • Going beyond the trolley dilemma. Determinants and consequences of an everyday moral dilemma between honesty and deception
  • Competition: OPUS 20
  • Grant amount: PLN 820,608

Dr. Ewelina Smoktunowicz
Institute of Social Sciences

  • Multidimensional structure of work-family and family-work conflict: does it matter? Consequences for stress, and job and family satisfaction
  • Competition: SONATA 16
  • Grant amount: PLN 418,996

National Science Centre Competitions

OPUS is a funding opportunity intended for a wide range of applicants. Research proposals submitted under this scheme may include purchase or construction of research equipment.
SONATA is a funding opportunity intended to support Principal Investigators in conducting innovative basic research, involving the use of advanced research equipment and/or an original methodology.

Other Research Funding Sources

The National Science Centre is not the only funding source supporting research at SWPS University. The university receives grants from the Ministry of Science and Higher Education, the European Commission, the Ministry of National Education, the Foundation for Polish Science, and The National Centre for Research and Development. SWPS University conducts over 200 research projects annually, including research and development and applied science projects.

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