Born in Budapest, Csepeli graduated with a graduate degree in Russian Literature and Psychology at the University of Eötvös Loránd (ELTE) in 1970. His M.A. thesis was written on the psychology of F.M. Dostoevsky.
Influenced by the work of Henri Tajfel and Willem Doise, his research has primarily focused on social-psychological problems of intergroup relations. Instead of doing experiments with experimentally-created virtual groups, he took the “minimal group paradigm” developed by Tajfel on real-life groups and adapted this methodology to local “real-life” groups – suchas Hungarian nationals and other minorities (Jews and the Roma). In 1977, he translated the seminal work of Gordon W. Allport on prejudice to Hungarian. As well, his textbook on social psychology is one of the basic texts used in the Hungarian higher education system. Between 1989 and 2010 he has taught at several noteworthy American universities.
Based on the surveys of representative samples of adult and young Hungarian national populaces, he created the pyramid-model of national identity. His Ph.D. on the structures and contents of Hungarian National Identity was defended in 1980 at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. His later research among intellectuals revealed the structure of national identity. As a result of this groundbreaking research, he has become D.Sc. of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences in 1992. Due to the change of the international context with AntalÖrkény, he participated in a series of research projects on defining national identity carried out in 1995, 2003, and 2013.
In collaboration with ÁrpádBaráth and Béla Buda in the 1980s, he finalized additional pioneering work on self-help groups in Hungary and taught resulting courses at the Dubrovnik Summer University.Investigating the contents of Hungarian public memory of the 20th century, he developed the concept of the “complex of twin traumas.” Bonded by this complex, the trauma of Trianon and the Holocaust are mutually-reinforcing each other making the coping with the past for contemporary Hungarians nearly impossible.
In the first decade of this century, his research interests turned toward solving the problems brought by a “global information society,” including digital equality, Big Data, and the ethics of robotics. Currently at IASK, he is doing an experiment on cooperative learning with EörsSzathmáry. He now chairs the Interdisciplinary Social Science Research Program of the Doctoral School of the Faculty of Social Science at ELTE, Budapest.
Do not hesitate to contact him directly via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
“Volentemducunt fata, nolentemtrahunt.”
“(Fate leads the willing and drags the unwilling).”–Seneca