I am currently a postoctoral scholar at Northwestern University. Beginning in January 2019, I will be an assistant professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Washington.
My research, which is at the intersection of social and health psychology, aims to understand and address health disparities. I show that health and well-being depend upon fit between people and their social contexts. When people’s traits, thoughts, and feelings fit with what is normative and valued in their communities, and they feel included, rather than excluded, they are more likely to be healthy. This insight is especially important in an increasingly diverse, yet still unequal, society, where minority status due to race, socioeconomic status, immigration status, gender, and sexuality can threaten people’s sense of inclusion and cultural fit. The lack of fit that many groups experience in majority or mainstream cultural contexts is an under-acknowledged but powerful contributor to health disparities, and changing social contexts to improve fit will reduce these disparities.