Kenny Coventry


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Personal profile


Professor Kenny Coventry holds a Chair in Psychology and is Associate Pro-Vice-Chancellor Research. He joined UEA in 2012 as inaugural Head of the School of Psychology following posts at Dundee, Plymouth, and Northumbria Universities. His main research interest is the relationship between language and perception, which has been funded by major grants from the ESRC, AHRC, EPSRC, and European Commission. He is a Chartered Psychologist (CPsychol), a Fellow of the British Psychological Society (FBPSsS), a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA), a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, and recipient of the 2015 British Psychological Society Cognitive Prize.

Indicative Publications

Coventry, K. R., Gudde, H. B., Diessel, H., Collier, J., Guijarro-Fuentes, P., Vulchanova, M., Vulchanov, V., Todisco, E., Reile, M., Breunesse, M., Plado, H., Bohnemeyer, J., Bsili, R., Caldano, M., Dekova, R., Donelson, K., Forker, D., Park, Y., Pathak, L. S., Peeters, D., Pizzuto, G., Serhan, B., Apse, L., Hesse, F., Hoang, L., Hoang, P., Igari, Y., Kapiley, K., Haupt-Khutsishvili, Kolding, S., Priiki, K., Mačiukaitytė, Mohite, V., Nahkola, T., Tsoi, S. T., Williams, S., Yasuda, S., Cangelosi, A., Duñabeitia, J. A., Mishra, R. K., Rocca, R., Šķilters, J., Wallentin, M., Žilinskaitė-Šinkūnienė, E., Incel, O. D. (2023). Spatial communication systems across languages reflect universal action constraints. Nature Human Behaviour.

Coventry, K. R., Griffiths, D., & Hamilton, C. J. (2014). Spatial demonstratives and perceptual space: Describing and remembering object location. Cognitive Psychology, 69, 46-70. 

Coventry, K. R., Christophel, T., Fehr, T., Valdés-Conroy, B., & Herrmann, M. (2013). Multiple routes to mental animation: Language and functional relations drive motion processing for static images. Psychological Science, 24 (8), 1379-138.

Diessel, H., Coventry, K. R., Gudde, H., & Capirci, O. (Eds.)(2021). Demonstratives, Deictic Pointing and the Conceptualization of Space. Frontiers eBook (224 pages). 

Harold, J., Lorenzoni, I., Shipley, T. F., & Coventry, K. R. (2016). Cognitive and psychological science insights to improve climate change data visualisation. Nature Climate Change, 6, 1-11.

For more information about Professor Coventry’s research and for a full publication list, please visit:

Key Research Interests

Professor Coventry's main research interest is how different supposed 'modules' in the mind/brain map onto one another. This has been manifest in a long-standing interest in the relationship between language and the vision and action systems. His research on this topic has been continuously funded by external grants since 2001 (from the ESRC, AHRC, EPRSC, and European Commission). A second main research interest is how cognition and emotion interaction in decision making under conditions of uncertainty (specifically during gambling). 

Current Grants

Vulchanova, M., Coventry, K. R., and co-PIs from other European countries.  (2019-2024). E-LADDA: Early language development in the digital age. Marie Sklodowska-Curie European Training Network (H2020-MSCA-ITN-2019)3,820,153.Visit the e-LADDA website here


Key Responsibilities

Professor Coventry is Associate Pro-Vice-Chancellor Research.

Teaching Interests

Professor Coventry contributes to MSc Cognitive Neuroscience; PSY-4003Y Psychology of the Individual:  Development, Personality, Brain and Cognition

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action

Media Expertise

  • Language & Communication
  • Psychology

Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

Recent external collaboration on country/territory level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots or