Professor Daryl O'Connor

Professor Daryl O'Connor


Daryl O'Connor is Professor of Psychology, University of Leeds. He completed his PhD at the Department of Psychology, University of Liverpool and then took up a World Health Organisation funded post-doctoral position at the Department of Endocrinology, Manchester Royal Infirmary (University of Manchester). Next he joined the School of Psychology, the University of Leeds as a Lecturer, later becoming Senior Lecturer and then Professor of Psychology. Daryl was Deputy Head of the School between 2006 and 2011. Daryl is the Past Chair of the British Psychological Society’s (BPS) Research Board (2015-2021), Past Convenor of the European Federation of Psychology Associations (EFPA) Board of Scientific Affairs (2017-2021) and was a Trustee of the BPS (2015-2021). He is also a past Chair of the BPS Division of Health Psychology and the BPS Psychobiology Section and, together with Mark Conner, he was joint Editor-in-Chief of the journal Psychology & Health between 2011 and 2019. In 2021, he became Editor-in-Chief at Cogent Psychology. He is also on the editorial board of the International Journal of Behavioral Medicine, Annals of Behavioral Medicine, Journal of Behavioral Medicine and Stress and Health and is a member of the editorial committee for Annual Review of Psychology. In 2011, Daryl was elected a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences, in 2014 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and in 2015, he was elected a Distinguished International Affiliate of the American Psychological Association's Division 38 (Health Psychology). In 2017 he was elected Fellow to the Academy of Behavioral Medicine Research and in 2019, he became a Fellow of the European Health Psychology Society. In 2021, Daryl was elected Honorary Life Member of the British Psychological Society. 

Research interests

Daryl is a registered health psychologist with strong research interests in psychobiology and currently leads the Health and Social Psychology Research Group in the School as well as heads up the Group's Laboratory for Stress and Health Research (STARlab). Daryl’s current research focuses on: i) investigating the effects of stress and psychological interventions on health outcomes (e.g., suicide behaviour, eating, cortisol reactivity and diurnal cortisol levels) and understanding the role of individual differences variables (e.g. conscientiousness, rumination, perseverative cognition) within the stress process, and ii) exploring the effects of implementation intentions-based interventions on screening behaviours. Our publications are available here. His work has been published extensively in leading international journals in his field and it has frequently featured on radio and television and in the national and international press. In addition, to his own recent work, Daryl has also been actively involved in promoting open science and improving psychological science nationally and across Europe.

Research groups and institutes

  • Health and social psychology

Current postgraduate researchers

<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4> <p>We welcome enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>