My goal is to understand how to build effective and cohesive teams -- where team members are committed to the task and have good relations with each other.

Research interests: Team Dynamics, Team Processes, Virtual Teams, Team Development

PhD Overview

With a global audience between 2.2 and 2.6 billion people, digital games provide a rich and unique environment to understand team dynamics. Two main questions drive my research:

How can we compose cohesive teams?

What are the behavioural indicators of team cohesion?

My research tackles these questions by looking at team dynamics in different types of team-based digital games. By focusing on identifying behavioural indicators of team cohesion in digital game teams, I can begin to understand the factors that affect team cohesion in this domain. In particular, I hope to uncover how to accelerate team cohesion development for more effective temporary teams and professional teams.


PhD Researcher in Team Dynamics and Player Psychology, University of York

Working Thesis: Identifying Communication Patterns of Cohesive Teams

MSc Industrial/Organisational and Business Psychology, University College London

Thesis: Digital Games as Trust-Building Tools for Virtual Work Teams

BSc Psychology, University of York

Thesis: The Effect of Playing a Complex Digital Game on EEG Alpha Activity

Grants & Awards


Recipient: UK-Canada Globalink Doctoral Exchange Scheme (2020-2021)

  • This scheme supports a 3-month fully-funded research placement at The Games Institute, University of Waterloo, Canada where I will be carrying out a mixed-method study of the dynamics of team cohesion.


Non Peer-Reviewed Publications & Talks

  • Sometimes I write on Medium

  • Speaker, 'Effective Communication in Chaos: Lessons for Communication System Design in Team Play' at Games Research User eXperience (GRUX), 27 November 2020

  • Panelist, 'What can we learn from (e)sports teams?' Cosmic Conference 2021, 16 Sept 2021

  • Panelist, 'Present and Future Research in Esports', CHI PLAY 2021, 19 October 2021


IGN South East Asia Feature

Science Media Malaysia Feature Not Just Fun and Games: Using Digital Games to Study Teamwork

Research Insider Talk What can we learn from digital game teams?

ITV Feature Gaming During Lockdown

Vulcan Post Feature

The Tabao Podcast EP:15

SuperGamerFest and Game Theory

The Esports Industry


Tan, E., & Cox, A. L. (2019, October). Trusted Teammates: Commercial Digital Games Can Be Effective Trust-Building Tools. In Extended Abstracts of the Annual Symposium on Computer-Human Interaction in Play Companion Extended Abstracts (pp. 705-713).

Tan, Evelyn et al. (2021, January), Less is More: Analysing Communication in Teams of Strangers. In Proceedings of Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS)-54 Conference 2021.

Skills and Expertise

  • Python for data science

  • Experimental planning and design

  • Qualtitative Research (e.g. Interviews, Content/Thematic Analysis)

  • Data Analytics

  • SPSS and R

Highlight: Mini Project

At Global Game Jam 2019, I learnt how to create a basic agent-based model using Pygame. In this super teeny tiny GIF you can see several agents being randomly generated in different positions and moving randomly toward different locations. On the top left is an agent count displaying the number of agents being spawned.