Stephen Suomi

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Stephen J. Suomi is chief of the Laboratory of Comparative Ethology at the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) in Bethesda, Maryland. He is also a research professor at the University of Virginia, the University of Maryland, and Johns Hopkins University. He is involved with the Experience-based Brain & Biological Development Program, launched in 2003 by the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research.[1]

Suomi was elected as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science for his contributions to the understanding of how socialization affects the psychological development of non-human primates.[1] He worked in the 1970s as a research assistant to psychologist Harry Harlow, running some of Harlow's "Pit of despair" isolation tests on infant rhesus macaques.[2]

Education and career[edit]

Suomi received a B.A. in psychology from Stanford University in 1968, and a Ph.D. in the same subject from the University of Wisconsin–Madison in 1971. He became a full professor with the university's psychology department in 1984, and began to work for the NICHD in 1983.[1]


Suomi describes his current research interests as focusing on the role of genetic and environmental factors in shaping individual psychological development in non-human primates; the effect of change on psychological development; and whether findings on monkeys in captivity can translate to monkeys living in the wild, and between human beings of different cultures.[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d "Profile for Stephen Suomi", Canadian Institute for Advanced Research.
  2. ^ Blum, Deborah. Love at Goon Park. Perseus, p. 219.

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