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Dr Camilla Elphick

Professional biography


PhD in Applied Cognitive Psychology (The University of Sussex in 2018, supervised by Graham Hole). The research used pupil size (pupillometry) to measure face recognition as ‘eyewitnesses’ looked at potential ‘suspects’ in lineups. This led us to believe that pupillometry could potentially be added to current police lineup procedures, to measure recognition as eyewitnesses make identification decisions. 

BSc (Hons, First Class) in Psychology (The Open University)


Associate Fellow of the HEA (2016)

Co-Director of the Harm and Evidence Collaborative (HERC)

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) representative for the Centre of Policing Research and Learning (CPRL)

Forensic Cognition Research Group (FCRG)

Research interests

My research interests lie mainly in the application of cognitive psychology to make positive changes to 'real world' issues.

I am particularly interested finding ways to minimise issues with eyewitness memory and identification accuracy, that stem from my PhD research. In this capactity, I have secured funding to build pilot technology that aims to measure memory strength as eyewitnesses view images of possible suspects, with colleagues from the University of Sussex, and Schools of Psychology and Counselling and of Computing and Communications at the Open University.

I worked on a citizen forensics project with colleages from the School of Psychology and Counselling and the School of Computing and Communications at the Open University. This aimed to improve communications between citizens and institutions (e.g. police). In this capacity, I conducted research to inform the design and development of future policing technologies, specifically policing apps and waskey to the conception and development of an online Gratitude Tree.

For a start-up company, I worked on the development of an AI reporting tool called Spot, which used natural language processing (NLP) to help people to document and report workplace harassment. In this capacity, I applied psychological understanding of memory to the documenting of sound evidence. Witnessing workplace harassment and discrimination: Overcoming the ‘social contagion’ of toxic work culture

Academic submissions under review:

Yuill, N., Marshall, J., and Waite, J., Jones, W., and Elphick, C. E. Social Behavioral Profiles and Relationships in Wiedemann-Steiner Syndrome: Parent Reports on 25 Cases. International Journal of Developmental Disabilities.

Teaching interests

I am a Lecturer in Psychology at the Open University, where I have been involved in:

  • D120: Encountering psychology in context (Level 1 undergraduate)
    • Author of Chapter 6 of Book 1, Altruism and cooperation, and accompanying online chapter
    • Author of online methods chapters: 
      • Designing research to answer questions (Week 11)
      • Analysing categorical data and writing a research report (Week 17)
      • Methods review (Week 23)
  • DE100: Investigating Psychology (Level 1 undergraduate)
  • DD210: Living psychology: from the everyday to the extraordinary (Level 2 undergraduate)
    • ​Author of online chapters:
      • ​Living online (Week 14)
      • Humans in Nature (Week 22)
  • D810: Critically exploring psychology (MSc in Psychology conversion)
  • Co-Chair of DD802: Investigating Forensic Psychology (MSc in Forensic Psychological Studies)

Impact and engagement

I made a written submission to the Women and Equalities Committee Inquiry into Sexual Harassment in the Workplace (2018) and the Independent advisory group on emerging technologies in policing: call for evidence (2021).

I was also involved in policy work by Graham Hole and Gemma Briggs, which addresses the dangers of driving while talking on hands-free mobile phones (2018)Think talking on your hands-free while driving is safe? Think again and Tackling the dangers of using hands-free mobiles while driving.

External collaborations

I was employed as an academic advisor for the Bad People podcast, available on BBC Sounds. In this capacity, I was interviewed for an episode on witnessing sexual harassment Hollywood Predator: Would you keep an open secret?​ and wrote a supporting article Weinstein: Why so many witnesses of sexual harassment stay silent.

I am involved in a project exploring the psychological aspects of Wiedemann Steiner Syndrome (WSS). This was genetically idenitified in 2012, so there has been no published psychological research to date. For this work, I set up the WSS Psychology Research Group and co-supervised a research student with Nicola Yuill from the University of Sussex. I also organised symposia and expert panels for conferences organised by the WSS Foundation, and have formed collaborations with Wendy Jones from Great Ormond Street Hospital and Jane Waite from Aston University for ongoing research projects.

The Wiedermann-Steiner Syndrome (WSS) Foundation aims to provide education, foster community, and stimulate research to improve the lives of everyone impacted by WSS. The WSS Psychology Research Group works regularly with the Foundation to share our seminal research into the psychological aspects of WSS.


Protecting Victim and Witness Statement: Examining the Effectiveness of a Chatbot that Uses Artificial Intelligence and a Cognitive Interview (2022)
Minhas, Rashid; Elphick, Camilla and Shaw, Julia
AI & Society, 37 (pp. 265-281)

Digital detectives: websleuthing reduces eyewitness identification accuracy in police lineups (2021-04)
Elphick, Camilla; Philpot, Richard; Zhang, Min; Stuart, Avelie; Pike, Graham; Strathie, Ailsa; Havard, Catriona; Walkington, Zoe; Frumkin, Lara; Levine, Mark; Price, Blaine; Bandara, Arosha and Nuseibeh, Bashar
Frontiers in Psychology, 12, Article 640513

Building trust in digital policing: a scoping review of community policing apps (2021)
Elphick, Camilla; Philpot, Richard; Zhang, Min; Stuart, Avelie; Walkington, Zoe; Frumkin, Lara; Pike, Graham; Gardner, Kelly; Lacey, Mark; Levine, Mark; Price, Blaine; Bandara, Arosha and Nuseibeh, Bashar
Police Practice and Research, 22(5) (1469 -1491)

Altruism and anxiety: Engagement with online community support initiatives (OCSIs) during Covid-19 lockdown in the UK and Ireland (2020-12-06)
Elphick, Camilla; Stuart, Avelie; Philpot, Richard; Walkington, Zoe; Frumkin, Lara; Zhang, Min; Levine, Mark; Price, Blaine; Pike, Graham; Nuseibeh, Bashar and Bandara, Arosha

You can believe your eyes: measuring implicit recognition in a lineup with pupillometry (2020)
Elphick, Camilla E. J.; Pike, Graham E. and Hole, Graham J.
Psychology, Crime and Law, 26(1) (pp. 67-92)

How Do People Use a Public Gratitude Platform in the Wild? (2024)
Zhang, Min; Arce-Plata, Carlos; Price, Blaine; Pike, Graham; Walkington, Zoe; Elphick, Camilla; Frumkin, Lara; Philpot, Richard; Keil, Tina; Levine, Mark; Stuart, Avelie; Nuseibeh, Bashar and Bandara, Arosha
In : Extended Abstracts of the CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI EA '24) (11-16 May 2024, Honolulu, Hawaii)

Towards a Socio-Technical Understanding of Police-Citizen Interactions (2023-08-25)
Zhang, Min; Bandara, Arosha K.; Philpot, Richard; Stuart, Avelie; Walkington, Zoe; Elphick, Camilla; Frumkin, Lara; Pike, Graham; Price, Blaine; Levine, Mark and Nuseibeh, Bashar
In : 19th IFIP TC13 International Conference INTERACT 2023 (28 Aug - 1 Sep 2023, York, UK) (pp. 324-345)

Attitudes towards Online Community Support Initiatives during the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Survey in the UK (2022-05-10)
Zhang, Min; Elphick, Camilla; Philpot, Richard; Walkington, Zoe; Frumkin, Lara; Price, Blaine; Pike, Graham; Levine, Mark; Nuseibeh, Bashar and Bandara, Arosha
In : CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems Extended Abstracts (1-7 May 2022)

Towards Citizen Forensics: Improving Citizen-Police Collaboration (2020)
Bandara, Arosha; Zhang, Min; Price, Blaine; Pike, Graham; Elphick, Camilla; Walkington, Zoe; Frumkin, Lara; Philpot, Richard; Levine, Mark; Stuart, Avelie and Nuseibeh, Bashar
In : Workshop on Crime and/or Punishment: Joining the Dots between Crime, Legality and HCI, Extended Abstracts of ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (25-30 Apr 2020, Honolulu, HI, USA)

Designing Technologies for Community Policing (2020)
Zhang, Min; Bandara, Arosha; Price, Blaine; Pike, Graham; Walkington, Zoe; Elphick, Camilla; Frumkin, Lara; Philpot, Richard; Levine, Mark; Stuart, Avelie and Nuseibeh, Bashar
In : Extended Abstracts of ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (Late Breaking Work) (25-30 Apr 2020, Honolulu, HI, USA) (pp. 1-9)

Pupil changes linked to eyewitness memory strength in police lineups (2019-11-04)
Elphick, Camilla; Hole, Graham and Welsh, Lucy
The Conversation

In the #MeToo era, a chatbot can help people report workplace harassment (2018-03-19)
Shaw, Julia and Elphick, Camilla
The Conversation