Skip to content Skip to navigation

Research Projects

Current Research

Cultural Variation in Affect Valuation

These studies examine how culture shapes the affective states that people ideally want to feel (their "ideal affect") and the behavioral choices that people make to achieve those desired states in the United States, Beijing, and Hong Kong.

Cultural Shaping of Social Perception

These studies examine how cultural differences in ideal affect shape how we perceive others, and make judgments about their their warmth, dominance, competence, and leadership potential. These studies are funded by the National Science Foundation.

Role of Ideal Affect in Prosocial Behavior

These studies examine how cultural differences in ideal affect shape the extent to which we are willing to trust and give to others in economic contexts, as well as the underlying neural mechanisms driving these processes.

Impact of Negative Affect

These studies investigate whether cultural differences in valuation of specific negative affect, such as anger over fear, has an impact on prejudiced attitudes and behavior.

Humility

These studies investigate how humility is defined, valued, and rewarded across other cultures and religions.

Socialization of Affect Valuation

These studies examine how children and adults learn to value specific emotional states, and how these values impact their perception and decision-making in settings.

Ideal Affect and Health-Related Decision Making

These studies examine whether people’s ideal affect (i.e., the affective states people ideally want to feel) influence their health care choices and health-promotion behaviors (e.g., choosing a physician, participation in an exercise program).


Other Research Interests

Culture, Age, and Affect Valuation

These studies examine how the affective states that people ideally want to feel (their "ideal affect") changes across the life span in a sample of European Americans and Chinese Americans between the ages of 18-80.

Cultural Variation in Emotional Response

These studies examine how culture shapes the physiological, subjective, and behavioral (facial and verbal) aspects of emotional responding during emotional events (e.g., while watching emotional films, reliving emotional episodes, discussing an area of conflict with a romantic partner).

Ideal Affect and Emotional Responding

These studies examine whether people’s ideal affect (i.e., the affective states that people ideally want to feel) influence their perceptions of and responses to emotional events that match (or don’t match) their ideal affect.

Cultural Variation in Avoided Affect

These studies examine how culture shapes the affective states that people want to avoid feeling (their "avoided affect") and the behavioral implications of such cultural differences.