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  • 53 Citations
  • 4 h-Index
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Personal profile


Valerie completed her doctoral studies at the School of Psychology, the University of Auckland, New Zealand in 2014. There, she did work on the cognitive neuroscience of episodic memory and event imagination. After her PhD, she completed a postdoctoral project at Aarhus University, Denmark, where she investigated the intersection between religious ritual and episodic memory. She then joined the Institute of Cognitive and Evolutionary Anthropology, University of Oxford, where she worked on religion, memory, and group processes as part of the Ritual, Community, and Conflict project. Valerie joined the Brain, Belief, and Behaviour Lab at the Centre for Advances in Behavioural Science, Coventry University, as Research Associate at the beginning of 2016. In 2019, she joined Centre for Trust, Peace and Social Relations (Coventry University) as Research Fellow, together with the others of the BBB Lab. She currently continues to research memory, imagination, and belief at Coventry University. 

Research Interests

Belief; Cognitive science of religion; Imagination; Episodic memory; Creativity; Unbelief; Secular beliefs; Worldviews; Intuition

Vision Statement

My primary interests are in the cognitive underpinnings of imagination and the psychology of belief, which I examine using methods from experimental psychology and cognitive neuroscience. My research takes place in the overlap between beliefs, memory, and imagination. My other interest is in unbelief, or so-called ‘secular’ beliefs: the beliefs which non-religious individuals hold, and their functions. 


  • BF Psychology
  • imagination
  • memory
  • belief
  • unbelief
  • religion
  • intuition
  • creativity

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Valerie van Mulukom is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

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Imagination Medicine & Life Sciences
Ceremonial Behavior Medicine & Life Sciences
Episodic Memory Medicine & Life Sciences
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Hippocampus Medicine & Life Sciences
Magnetic Resonance Imaging Medicine & Life Sciences
Chemical activation Chemical Compounds
pilgrimage Social Sciences

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Research Output 2013 2018

  • 53 Citations
  • 4 h-Index
  • 5 Article
  • 2 Poster
  • 1 Editorial

Autobiographical Memory Pathway from Shared Dysphoria to Identity Fusion

van Mulukom, V., Jul 2018.

Research output: Contribution to conferencePoster

Individual Differences in Imaginative Ability

van Mulukom, V., Jul 2018.

Research output: Contribution to conferencePoster

2 Citations (Scopus)
9 Downloads (Pure)

Introduction to the special issue: What are religious beliefs?

Coleman, T. J., Jong, J. & Van Mulukom, V., 2018, In : Contemporary Pragmatism . 15, 3, p. 279-283 5 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorial

Open Access
15 Citations (Scopus)
27 Downloads (Pure)

An fMRI investigation of the relationship between future imagination and cognitive flexibility

Roberts, R. P., Wiebels, K., Sumner, R. L., van Mulukom, V., Grady, C. L., Schacter, D. L. & Addis, D. R., 27 Jan 2017, In : Neuropsychologia. 95, p. 156-172 17 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
Magnetic Resonance Imaging
Least-Squares Analysis
3 Citations (Scopus)
Ceremonial Behavior
Episodic Memory
Sense of Coherence

Activities 2017 2019

  • 7 Oral presentation

Press / Media

Intuition (Anthill podcast)

Valerie van Mulukom


1 media contribution

Press/Media: Research

The secret to creativity – according to science

Valerie van Mulukom


1 media contribution

Press/Media: Research