Coye Cheshire

Coye Cheshire



Trust, social exchange, social psychology, and information exchange


Coye Cheshire is a professor at the UC Berkeley School of Information. He studies sociological social psychology and group processes, with a focus in social exchange, cooperation, and trust in technology-mediated environments. He received his Ph.D. in sociology from Stanford University, and M.A. and B.A. in sociology from Stanford University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, respectively.

Technology-mediated environments often change the way that we use and interpret social cues in our everyday lives. As a result, online social interactions provide a unique and fascinating setting for studying social psychological phenomena. Professor Cheshire is a technology advocate and information technology enthusiast, so his attraction to social psychology, the Internet, and technology-mediated communication became a natural blend of his personal and professional pursuits.

Current Research

I am interested in the social aspects of technology-mediated interactions, including risk, uncertainty, trust, and cooperation. I apply social psychological theories to online information problems (including conspiracy theories, online health issues, and online harms). Recent projects include studies of sensemaking in complex information problems, a series of lab experiments examining shifts in modes of social exchange (in the US and across societies), and longitudinal research on motivations for contributing effort in online platforms. I strongly believe in using mixed methodological approaches to address complex research problems, including laboratory and field experiments, longitudinal and cross-sectional survey analysis, online behavioral log analysis, and in-depth qualitative interviews. I teach graduate courses on social psychology in information technology, quantitative social research methods, and doctoral theory and research design. I am also the co-editor of eTrust: Forming Relationships in the Online World (Part of the Russell Sage Foundation Series on Trust).


B.A., Sociology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1997
M.A., Sociology, Stanford University, 1998
Ph.D., Sociology, Stanford University, 2005

What is the best thing about working at the I School?
One of the most exciting and rewarding things about our program is its multi-disciplinary nature. I love the fact that faculty and students are continually exposed to new, cutting-edge research that spans the social, technical, theoretical, and practical dimensions of information and information technology.

Something few people know about me
I love animals, and we have many, many pets (rescued house rabbits and cats). I also love mountain biking and hiking, and I am always happy to meet students and colleagues on Mt. Diablo!

Last updated:

June 8, 2023