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Jo Bower - University of East Anglia. Norwich, , GB

Jo Bower Jo Bower

Lecturer in Psychology | University of East Anglia


She researches the link between sleep, mood & mental health, examining how different aspects of sleep can influence our emotional responses.






Returning to the Moon - A joint UK Space LABS and SGAC webinar on Health in Space




Jo Bower is a Lecturer in the School of Psychology at UEA. She researches the link between sleep, mood and mental health – examining how different aspects of sleep can influence our emotional responses. Within this field she has been exploring: the emotions resulting from heavily disrupted sleep among those in operating extreme conditions (such as in space or in the Polar regions); people’s sleep patterns and associated moods during the COVID-19 lockdown; how teenagers learn to control their emotions and regulate themselves as they cope with a ‘late sleeper’ lifestyle’; and the connection between body temperature, the menstrual cycle and sleep.

Jo’s original PhD examined how people respond to positive emotions and how they try to maintain a ‘feel good’ factor. She has worked with NASA and the British Antarctic Survey on ‘sleep and emotion’ projects and completed her Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship at the University of Houston.

Areas of Expertise (5)

Sleep Patterns

Sleep and Mood

Sleep and Emotional Responses


Sleep and Mental Health

Education (3)

University of Reading: Ph.D., Psychology 2015

University of London, Birkbeck College: M.Sc., Cognitive Neuroscience 2011

University of Bath: B.Sc., Psychology 2005

Media Appearances (2)

How long space voyages could mess with our minds

BBC Future  online


On Earth, our sleep-wake cycle is regulated both by how tired we are, and by daylight. “[Astronauts] won't be able to use that light cue to synchronise their sleep-wake patterns,” says Joanne Bower, a sleep researcher at De Montfort University in Leicester, UK. “People who don't keep a kind of strict schedule then suffer much more with their sleep patterns.”

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Study finds that teenagers are not getting enough sleep

BBC News  online


Teenagers are renowned for enjoying lengthy lie-ins in the morning. But contrary to popular belief, their reluctance to get out of bed may not be just down to laziness alone.

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Event Appearances (5)

Emotional Health in Extreme Environments. “Returning to the Moon: Implications”

UKSpaceLABS - 2020  London, U.K.

How desired emotional states impact attention and attentional control

International Society for Research on Emotion (ISRE) Conference - 2019  Amsterdam, Netherlands

Poor Sleep is Associated with Reduced Positive Affect and Worsened Regulation of Positive Emotions in Adolescents

SLEEP - 2019  San Antonio, USA

Pre-Trauma Sleep Patterns Predict Maladaptive Responses to Trauma in Youth

SLEEP - 2019  San Antonio, USA

Sleep Patterns and Timing are Associated with the Regulation of Positive and Negative Emotions

Society for Research on Child Development - 2019  Baltimore, USA

Articles (5)

Differences in affordance-based behaviors within an isolated and confined environment are related to sleep, emotional health and physiological parameters

Acta Astronautica

2020 Astronauts are required to operate within isolated, confined and extreme environments (ICE). Isolated, confined and controlled (ICC) environments, such as the NASA Human Exploration Research Analog (HERA) site, provide ways of studying and predicting behavioral changes that occur in response to prolonged exposure to ICE environments.

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Cognitive performance during prolonged periods in isolated, confined, and extreme environments

Acta Astronautica

2020 Astronauts are required to perform a variety of cognitively demanding tasks in the face of multiple prolonged stressors in isolated, confined and extreme (ICE) environments. Short-term ICE environmental exposure can negatively affect cognitive performance, alter emotional responses, and increase reaction time in affordance-based tasks; however, these domains have not been studied simultaneously in prolonged ICE settings.

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Sleep restriction alters children’s positive emotional responses, but effects are moderated by anxiety

Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry

2020 An abundance of cross‐sectional research links inadequate sleep with poor emotional health, but experimental studies in children are rare. Further, the impact of sleep loss is not uniform across individuals and pre‐existing anxiety might potentiate the effects of poor sleep on children’s emotional functioning.

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Sleep deprivation impairs affordance perception behavior during an action boundary accuracy assessment

Acta Astronautica

2020 Astronauts must adapt behaviors to changing affordances (action possibilities) when exposed to operational stressors such as sleep deprivation. The inability to correctly perceive affordances may cause astronauts to attempt behaviors that place them at greater risk. This study investigated the effects of sleep deprivation on affordance perception performance during 30-day NASA Human Exploration Research Analog missions.

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Sleep, Mood, and Emotion

The Encyclopedia of Child and Adolescent Development

2019 Adequate sleep is essential for healthy development and shares a particularly intimate relationship with emotional well‐being. Nonetheless, many youths do not obtain enough sleep, hence placing themselves at risk of emotional problems.

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