Alexander Allan Innes Wedderburn

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Alexander Allan Innes "Zander" Wedderburn
Born Alexander Allan Innes Wedderburn
(1935-05-09)9 May 1935
Edinburgh, Scotland, UK
Nationality British
Fields Psychology, Occupational psychology

Alexander Allan Innes "Zander" Wedderburn (born 9 May 1935) is a British psychologist and Emeritus Professor of Psychology at the Heriot-Watt University.

Life and career[edit]

Alexander Wedderburn was born in Edinburgh, the son of Alexander Archibald Innes Wedderburn and Ellen Innes Jeans. His father was a lawyer and auditor to the Court of Session. He graduated from Exeter College, Oxford in 1959 and was awarded a Ph.D. by Heriot-Watt in 1992. Between 1968 and 2000 he lectured at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh.

After his retirement, Alexander Wedderburn went on to found publishing company Fledgling Press.


Professor Wedderburn taught occupational psychology in the School of Management at Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, for 32 years, and is a Professor Emeritus there.[1] Most of his teaching was in the area of making occupational psychology available to business students and engineers, and in his final three years he established a part-time M.Sc. in Occupational Psychology taught jointly with Strathclyde University.

His main research impact has been on hours of work and shiftwork, where he is an internationally known authority, building on a British Steel Corporation Fellowship in 1970-72.

His particular interest was in the interface between research and practice, with several measured practical interventions, a ten year stint as editor of the Bulletin of European Shiftwork Topics, and founding editor of the Shiftwork International Newsletter. He was President of the British Psychological Society in 2003/2004,[1] only the third occupational psychologist to achieve this in the past fifty years.

He is a fellow of the Working Time Society.


  • Gray J.A. and Wedderburn A.A.I., (1960) "Grouping strategies with simultaneous stimuli". Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 12, 180-184.
  • Wedderburn, A.A.I. (1967) Social factors in swiftly rotating shifts. Occupational Psychology, 41, 85-107.
  • Wedderburn, A.A.I. (1972) Sleep patterns on the 25-hour day in a group of tidal shiftworkers. Studia Laboris et Salutis, 11, 101-106.
  • Keenan, A. and Wedderburn, A.A.I., (1975) Effects of non-verbal behaviour of interviewers on candidates’ impressions. Journal of Occupational Psychology, 48, 129-132.
  • Wedderburn, A.A.I. (1975) EEG and self-recorded sleep of two shiftworkers over four weeks of real and synthetic work. In Experimental Studies of Shiftwork, edited by W.P.Colquhuoun et al., Forschungsberichte des Landes Nordrhein-Westfalen 2513.
  • Wedderburn, A.A.I. (1978) Some suggestions for increasing the usefulness of psychological and sociological studies of shiftwork. Ergonomics, 21, 827-833.
  • Keenan, A. and Wedderburn, A.A.I. (1980), Putting the boot on the other foot: candidates’ descriptions of interviewers. Journal of Occupational Psychology, 53, 81-89
  • Wedderburn, A.A.I. (1987) Unintentional falling asleep at work: what can you do about it In Contemporary advances in shiftwork research , ed. Oginski et al., Krakow, Medical Academy.
  • Wedderburn, A.A.I. (1987) Sleeping on the job: the use of anecdotes for recording rare but serious events. Ergonomics, 30, 1229-1233.
  • Wedderburn, A.A.I. (1991) Guidelines for shiftworkers. Bulletin of European Shiftwork Topics 3. European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions, Dublin.
  • Wedderburn, A.A.I. (1992) How fast should the night shift rotate? A rejoinder. Ergonomics, 35, 1447-1451
  • Wedderburn A.A.I. and Scholarios, D. (1993) Guidelines for shiftworkers: trials and errors. Ergonomics, 36, 211-217
  • Wedderburn, A.A.I. (1993) Teaching grandmothers how to suck eggs: do shiftworkers need rules or guidelines? Ergonomics, 36.
  • Wedderburn, A.A.I. (1995) Men and women who like continuous shiftwork are more ‘hardy’: but what does it mean? Work and Stress, 9, 206-210.
  • Quinn, K.M., King, C., Slawek, K. and Wedderburn, A.A.I. (1995) The effectiveness of an individually tailored health education intervention for 24hr shiftworkers. Paper presented at the XII Symposium on night and shiftwork, Connecticut.
  • Monk, T.H., Folkarc, S. and Wedderburn A.A.I. (1996) Maintaining safety and high performance on shiftwork. in Applied Ergonomics 27, 17-23
  • Wedderburn A.A.I. Rankin D. (2001) An intervention using a self-help guide to improve the coping behaviour of nightshift workers and its evaluation. HSE Books


In 1960, he married Bridget Johnstone. The couple have four children and eight grandchildren.


  1. ^ a b "New President". The Psychologist (British Psychological Society) 16 (4): 181. April 2003. Retrieved 24 August 2012. 

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