Professor Peter Smith

Staff details

Position Emeritus Professor
Department Psychology
Email p.smith (
Phone +44 (0)20 7919 7898
Professor Peter Smith


Peter is at the Unit for School and Family Studies, which he headed from 1998-2011. He is as an Emeritus Professor, continuing with research, writing, and international collaborations. He is a Fellow of the British Psychological Society, the Association of Psychological Sciences, and the Academy of Social Sciences. In 2015 he was awarded the William Thierry Preyer award for Excellence in Research on Human Development, by the European Society for Developmental Psychology, and in 2018 the Student Wellbeing and Prevention of Violence (SWAPv) Award, from Flinders University, Australia. In December 2018 he is receiving an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Vienna.

Grants and Awards

Peter has received external funding in recent years from the EU (DAPHNE, COST), British Council (PMI2), DCSF, EHRC, FamilyLives, DigitalMe, ESRC, and QNRF. He is currently co-PI of an Erasmus+ grant on participatory exploration of cyberbullying, young people and socio-economic disadvantage.

Public Engagement and Knowledge Exchange

Peter is an Honorary Member of the of European Antibullying Network, and of the Antibullying Alliance in the UK. He has given presentations on ways of tackling school bullying to a range of organisations, including recently the Flemish Ministry of Education, Born This Way Foundation (USA), ISPRA, EDUC, Ministry of Education in Singapore, and Prince of Songkhla University in Thailand. He is participating in the 2018 Battle of Ideas program in London, on the role of grandparents.

Research Interests

Peter’s main area of research is on school bullying. He is currently particularly interested in country differences and cross-cultural comparisons. He has also casrried out research on children’s play; and on the role of grandparents in children’s development.

• School bullying
• Cyberbullying
• Cross-national comparisons in bullying
• Nature and growth of the bullying research program
• Role of play in children’s development
• Children’s rough-and-tumble play
• The grandparent role

Publications and research outputs


Smith, Peter K.. 2016. Adolescence: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford UK: Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780199665563

Smith, Peter K.; Cowie, Helen and Blades, Mark. 2015. Understanding Children's Development 6th edition. Chichester: Wiley. ISBN 978-1-118-77298-0

Peter K, Smith. 2014. Understanding School Bullying: Its Nature & Prevention Strategies. London, UK: Sage Publications. ISBN 978-1-84887-904-2

Smith, Peter K.. 2013. Emotional and behavioural difficulties associated with bullying and cyberbullying. Abingdon, UK: Routledge. ISBN 978-0-415-63498-4

Smith, Peter K.. 2009. Children and Play: Understanding Children's Worlds. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell. ISBN 978-0-631-23521-7

Edited Book

Smith, Peter K.; Sundaram, Suresh; Spears, Barbara; Blaya, Catherine; Schafer, Mechthild and Sandhu, Damanjit, eds. 2018. Bullying, cyberbullying and pupil well-being in schools: Comparing European, Australian and Indian Perspectives. Cambridge: Cambridge Univedrsity Press. ISBN 9781107189393

Peter K, Smith; Keumjoo, Kwak and Yuichi, Toda, eds. 2016. School Bullying in Different Cultures. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-1-107-03189-0

Smith, Peter K. and Steffgen, Georges, eds. 2013. Cyberbullying through the New Media Findings from an international network. Hove, East Sussex, UK: Psychology Press. ISBN 9781848722538

Book Section

Nery, Miguel; Neto, Carlos; Rosado, António and Smith, Peter K.. 2020. Welfare and the protection of young athletes: an analysis of the nature and prevalence of bullying behaviours in sport settings. In: Melanie Lang, ed. Routledge Handbook of Athlete Welfare. Abingdon: Routledge, pp. 105-118. ISBN 9780367193256

Smith, Peter K.. 2011. Bullying in schools: thirty years of research. In: Iain Coyne and Claire P. Monks, eds. Bullying in Different Contexts. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp. 36-59. ISBN 9780521132596

Gregory, Alice M.; Ball, Harriet A. and Button, Tanya M.. 2010. Behavioural Genetics. In: Peter K. Smith and Craig Hart, eds. The Wiley-Blackwell Handbook of Childhood Social Development, 2nd Edition. London and Hoboken, NJ: Wiley-Blackwell, pp. 27-43. ISBN 978-1-4051-9679-6

Cowie, Helen and Smith, Peter K.. 2010. Peer support as a means of improving school safety and reducing bullying and violence. In: Beth Doll; William Pfohl and Jina Yoon, eds. Handbook of Youth Prevention Science. New York: Routledge, pp. 177-192. ISBN 978-0-8058-6332-1

Curtner-Smith, Mary Elisabeth; Smith, Peter K. and Porter, Malvin. 2010. Family level intervention with bullies and victims. In: Eric Vernberg and Bridget Biggs, eds. Preventing and Treating Bullying and Victimization. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 75-105. ISBN 9780195335873

Smith, Peter K.. 2010. Cyberbullying: the European perspective. In: Joaquin Mora-Merchan and Thomas Jaeger, eds. Cyberbullying: A cross-national comparison. Landau: Verlag Empirische Pädagogik, pp. 7-19. ISBN 978-3-941320-51-2

Smith, Peter K. and Slonje, Robert. 2010. Cyberbullying: the nature and extent of a new kind of bullying, in and out of school. In: Shane Jimerson; Susan Swearer and Dorothy Espelage, eds. The International Handbook of School Bullying. New York and Abingdon: Routledge, pp. 249-262. ISBN 9780805863925

Smith, Peter K.. 2009. Bullying in primary and secondary schools: Psychological and organizational comparisons. In: Shane Jimerson; Susan Swearer and Dorothy Espelage, eds. The International Handbook of School Bullying. New York and Abingdon: Routledge, pp. 137-149. ISBN 9780805863925

Thompson, Fran; Tippett, Neil and Smith, Peter K.. 2009. Prevention and responses to bullying. In: Kathryn Geldard, ed. Practical Interventions for Young People at Risk. Thousand Oaks: Sage. ISBN 9781847875624


Camacho, Antonio; Smith, Peter K.; Ortega-Ruiz, Rosario and Romera, Eva M.. 2023. Joint trajectories of cyberbullying perpetration and victimization: Associations with psychosocial adjustment. Computers in Human Behavior, 148, 107924. ISSN 0747-5632

Smith, Peter K. and StGeorge, Jennifer M.. 2023. Play fighting (rough-and-tumble play) in children: developmental and evolutionary perspectives. International Journal of Play, 12(1), pp. 113-126. ISSN 2159-4937

Samara, Muthanna; Massarwi, Adeem Ahmad; El-Asam, Aiman; Hammuda, Sara; Smith, Peter K. and Morsi, Hisham. 2021. The Mediating Role of Bullying and Victimisation on the Relationship Between Problematic Internet Use and Substance Abuse Among Adolescents in the UK: The Parent–Child Relationship as a Moderator. Frontiers in Psychiatry, 12, 493385. ISSN 1664-0640

Kanetsuna, Tomoyuki and Smith, Peter K.. 2021. An Analysis of Differences in the Role of Friendships and the School Class in Children’s Perceptions of Bullying in England and Ijime in Japan: A Translation and Expansion of Kanetsuna (2009). International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 18(15), 8234. ISSN 1660-4601

Limber, Susan; Smith, Peter K. and Breivik, Kyrre. 2021. Dan Olweus (1931–2020). American Psychologist, 76(5), p. 810. ISSN 0003-066X

Monks, Claire P.; Smith, Peter K. and Kucaba, Kat. 2021. Peer Victimisation in Early Childhood; Observations of Participant Roles and Sex Differences. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 18(2), 415. ISSN 1660-4601

Smith, Peter K.; Thompson, Fran; Jessel, John; Kožuchová, Andrea; Ferreira, Irene; Idriceanu, Gabriela; Menesini, Ersilia; Miklosz, Margaret and de Villanueva, Marian. 2020. Training, Implementation, and Potential of a Cybermentoring Scheme in Six EU Countries. Journal of Psychologists and Counsellors in Schools, 30(1), pp. 58-72. ISSN 2055-6365

Peter K, Smith. 2018. Commentary: Types of bullying, types of intervention: reflections on Arseneault. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 59(4), pp. 422-423. ISSN 0021-9630

Samara, Muthanna; Burbidge, Vicky; El Asam, Aiman; Foody, Mairéad; Smith, Peter K. and Morsi, Hisham. 2017. Bullying and Cyberbullying: Their Legal Status and Use in Psychological Assessment. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 14(12), 1449. ISSN 1661-7827

Bagci, Sabahat C.; Kumashiro, Madoka; Rutland, Adam; Smith, Peter K. and Blumberg, Herbert H.. 2017. Cross-ethnic friendships, psychological well-being, and academic outcomes: Study of South Asian and White children in the UK. European Journal of Developmental Psychology, 14, pp. 190-205. ISSN 1740-5629

Smith, Peter K.; Thompson, Fran and Davidson, Julia. 2014. Cyber safety for adolescent girls: bullying, harassment, sexting, pornography, and solicitation. Current Opinion in Obstetrics and Gynecology, 26(5), pp. 360-365. ISSN 1040-872X

Livingstone, Sonia and Smith, Peter K.. 2014. Annual Research Review: Harms experienced by child users of online and mobile technologies: the nature, prevalence and management of sexual and aggressive risks in the digital age. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 55(6), pp. 635-654. ISSN 0021-9630

Bagci, Sabahat C.; Rutland, Adam; Kumashiro, Madoka; Smith, Peter K. and Blumberg, Herbert H.. 2014. Are minority status children's cross-ethnic friendships beneficial in a multiethnic context? British Journal of Developmental Psychology, 32(1), pp. 107-115. ISSN 0261510X

Smith, Peter K. and Jones, Alice P.. 2012. The Importance of Developmental Science for Studies in Bullying and Victimization. International Journal of Developmental Science, 6(1-2), pp. 71-74.

Boulton, Michael J.; Smith, Peter K. and Cowie, Helen. 2010. Short-Term Longitudinal Relationships Between Children's Peer Victimization/Bullying Experiences and Self-Perceptions Evidence for Reciprocity. School Psychology International, 31(3), pp. 296-311.

Houlston, Catherine and Smith, Peter K.. 2010. The impact of a peer counselling scheme to address bullying in an all-girl London secondary school: A short-term longitudinal study. British Journal of Educational Psychology, 79(1), pp. 69-86. ISSN 0007-0998

Houlston, Catherine; Smith, Peter K. and Jessel, John. 2009. Investigating the extent and use of peer support initiatives in English schools. Educational Psychology, 29(3), pp. 325-344. ISSN 0144-3410

Monks, Claire P.; Smith, Peter K.; Naylor, Paul; Barter, Christine; Ireland, Jane L. and Coyne, Iain. 2009. Bullying in different contexts: Commonalities, differences and the role of theory. Aggression and Violent Behavior, 14(2), pp. 146-156. ISSN 13591789

Slonje, Robert and Smith, Peter K.. 2008. Cyberbullying: Another main type of bullying? Scandinavian Journal of Psychology, 49(2), pp. 147-154. ISSN 0036-5564

Samara, Muthanna and Smith, Peter K.. 2008. How schools tackle bullying, and the use of whole school policies: changes over the last decade. Educational Psychology, 28(6), pp. 663-676. ISSN 0144-3410

Koo, Hyojin; Kwak, Keumjoo and Smith, Peter K.. 2008. Victimization in Korean Schools: The Nature, Incidence, and Distinctive Features of Korean Bullying or Wang-Ta. Journal of School Violence, 7(4), pp. 119-139. ISSN 1538-8220

Smith, Peter K.; Smith, Cherise; Osborn, Rob and Samara, Muthanna. 2008. A content analysis of school anti-bullying policies: progress and limitations. Educational Psychology in Practice, 24(1), pp. 1-12. ISSN 0266-7363

Smith, Peter K.; Mahdavi, Jess; Carvalho, Manuel; Fisher, Sonja; Russell, Shanette and Tippett, Neil. 2008. Cyberbullying: its nature and impact in secondary school pupils. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 49(4), pp. 376-385. ISSN 0021-9630

Smith, Peter K. and Monks, C. P.. 2008. Concepts of bullying: Developmental and cultural aspects. International Journal of Adolescent Medicine and Health, 20(1), pp. 101-112. ISSN 0334-0139

Smith, Peter K.; Ananiadou, Katerina and Cowie, Helen. 2003. Interventions to reduce school bullying. Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, 48(9), pp. 591-599. ISSN 07067437

Smith, Peter K.; Monks, C. and Swettenham, J.. 2003. Aggressors, victims and defenders in preschool: peer, self and teacher reports. Merrill-Palmer Quarterly, 49(4), pp. 453-469. ISSN 15350266

Smith, Peter K.; Singer, M.; Hoel, H. and Cooper, C.. 2003. Victimisation in the school and the workplace: Are there any links? British Journal of Psychology, 94(2), pp. 175-188. ISSN 00071269

Smith, Peter K.; Cowie, Helen; Olafsson, Ragnar and Liefooghe, Andy. 2002. Definitions of Bullying: A Comparison of Terms Used, and Age and Gender Differences, in a Fourteen Country International Comparison. Child Development, 73(4), pp. 1119-1133. ISSN 00093920