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Department of Psychology


Melisa is a Gates Scholar and PhD Candidate in Psychology. At the Cambridge Social Decision-Making Lab, her research focuses attitudes, persuasion, and resistance against misinformation through inoculation theory. Throughout her studies, she initiated ways to contribute to societally contested issues, such as immigration and vaccinations, through her work.  She is the Co-Founder of CUBIT, an inter-disciplinary initiative to leverage behavioural insights to tackle pressing societal challenges. Moreover, she won the WhatsApp Research Grant for Misinformation to develop interventions against the spread of harmful misinformation on WhatsApp in India, Brazil, and the UK. Similarily, in collaboration with the UK Cabinet Office (and supported by UNESCO, UN, and WHO), Melisa co-developd Go Viral!, a gamified intervention to combat the threat posed by COVID-19 misinformation. Melisa collaborates with the Stanford Health Communication Initiative and Duke University's efforts to fight vaccine hesitancy. She also enjoys public engagement (e.g., BBC World) and continues to advise governmental institutions (e.g. EU Commission, NATO) on leveraging psychological insights in evidence-based policy-making.



Persuasion & Social Influence

Vaccine Hesitancy




Key publications: 

Compton, J., van der Linden, S., Cook, J., & Basol, M. (2021). Inoculation theory in the post-truth era: Extant findings and new frontiers for contested science, misinformation, and conspiracy theories. Social and Personality Psychology Compass.

Basol, M., Roozenbeek, J., Berriche, M., Uenal, F., McClanahan, W.P., & van der Linden, S. (2021). Towards psychological herd immunity: Cross-cultural evidence for two prebunking interventions against COVID-19 misinformation. Big Data & Society.

van der Linden, S., Roozenbeek, J., Maertens, R., Basol, M., Kacha, O., Rathje, S., Steenbuch Traberg, C. (2021). How can psychological science help counter the spread of fake news? Spanish Journal of Psychology.

Maertens, R., Roozenbeek, J., Basol, M., & van der Linden, S. (2020). Long-term effectiveness of inoculation against misinformation: Three longitudinal experimentsJournal of Experimental Psychology: Applied.

Basol, M., Roozenbeek, J., & van der Linden, S. (2020). Good news about Bad News: Gamified inoculation boosts confidence and cognitive immunity against fake newsJournal of Cognition 3(1), 1-9.

PhD student

Contact Details

Not available for consultancy