Project description

Bio-behavioral synchrony in social interactions

Project leaderStefanie Höhl (Universität Wien)
Project partnersDrew Abney (University of Georgia); Bennett Bertenthal (University of Indiana Bloomington); Melanie Kungl (Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg); Pascal Vrticka (University of Essex); Sam Wass (University of East London); Lars White (Uniklinikum Leipzig)
Project membersGabriela Markova, Trinh Nguyen, Anna Bánki
Durationsince 2018


Several studies of the research group address bio-behavioral synchrony during social interactions, with a main focus on parent-child dyads. We investigate which factors influence synchrony, e.g. characteristics of the interaction and relationship between child and caregiver. Moreover, implications of interpersonal synchronization are examined, such as cooperation and social learning.

Our project results

  • Nguyen, T., Zimmer, L., & Hoehl, S. (2023). Your turn, my turn. Neural synchrony in mother–infant proto-conversation. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 378, [20210488]. [DOI]
  • Kayhan, E., Nguyen, T., Matthes, D., Langeloh, M., Michel, C., Jiang, J., & Hoehl, S. (2022). Interpersonal neural synchrony when predicting others’ actions during a game of rock-paper-scissor. Scientific Reports, 12, 12967. [DOI]
  • Kayhan, E., Matthes, D., Haresign, I. M., Bánki, A., Michel, C., Langeloh, M., Wass, S., & Hoehl, S. (2022). DEEP: A dual EEG pipeline for developmental hyperscanning studies. Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience, 54, 101104. [DOI] 
  • Nguyen, T., Abney, D. H., Salamander, D., Bertenthal, B. I., & Hoehl, S. (2021). Proximity and touch are associated with neural but not physiological synchrony in naturalistic mother-infant interactions. NeuroImage, 244. [DOI]
  • Nguyen, T., Schleihauf, H., Kungl, M., Kayhan, E. Hoehl, S., & Vrtička, P. (2021). Interpersonal neural synchrony during father-child problem solving: An fNIRS hyperscanning study. Child Development[DOI]
  • Schirmer, A., Fairhurst, M., & Hoehl, S. (2021). Being ‘in sync’ – Is interactional synchrony the key to understanding the social brain? (Editorial). Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience[DOI]
  • Nguyen, T., Hoehl, S., & Vrticka, P. (2021). A Guide to Parent-Child fNIRS Hyperscanning Data Processing and Analysis. Sensors, 21(12), 4075; [DOI]
  • Nguyen, T., Schleihauf, H., Kayhan, E., Matthes, D., Vrtička, P., & Hoehl, S. (2020). Neural synchrony in mother-child conversation: Exploring the role of communicative patterns. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience[DOI]  
  • Hoehl, S., Fairhurst, M., Schirmer, A. (2020). Interactional Synchrony: Signals, Mechanisms, and Benefits. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience[DOI]
  • Nguyen, T., Bánki, A., Markova, G., & Hoehl, S. (2020). Studying parent-child interaction with hyperscanning. In S. Hunnius & M. Meyer (Eds.), Progress in Brain Research Vol. 258: New Perspectives on Early Social-cognitive Development, Amsterdam: Elsevier.
  • Nguyen, T., Schleihauf, H., Kayhan, E., Matthes, D., Vrtička, P., & Hoehl, S. (2020). The effects of interaction quality on neural synchrony during mother-child problem solving. Cortex, 124, 235-249. [DOI]
  • Markova, G., Nguyen, T., Schätz, C. M., & De Eccher, M. (2020). Singing in Tune – Being in Tune: Relationship Between Maternal Playful Singing and Interpersonal Synchrony. Enfance, 1(1), 89-107. [DOI]
  • Markova, G., Nguyen, T., & Hoehl, S. (2019). Neurobehavioral interpersonal synchrony in early development: The role of interactional rhythms. Frontiers in Psychology, 10:2078. [DOI]
  • Hoehl, S. & Markova, G. (2018). Moving developmental social neuroscience toward a second-person approach. PLoS Biology, 16(12): e3000055. [DOI]