Social Conflicts and Harmony: Why don’t we get along? How can we get along?
My research investigates conflicts and harmony at multiple levels. At the intergroup level, my research has shown how dispositional and situational changes in levels of group identification influence memory of historical intergroup conflicts, and how historical memory, in turn, influences social connectedness. At the interpersonal level, I have examined the impact of individual differences and situational changes in felt security on conflict reduction and helpful behaviors within couples and among peers. At the intrapersonal level, I have studied introspective ways to reduce intrapsychic conflicts and promote adaptive self-regulation. My current studies involve integrating these three levels by focusing on how intrapersonal level factors can promote harmony at the interpersonal and intergroup levels. My program of research aimed at investigating positive interpersonal and intergroup relations and personal flourishing, arguably the most pressing issues of humanity, falls under the longstanding call to “make psychology matter” to our lives beyond the laboratory. As I plan my future studies, I remain committed to integrating and applying diverse theoretical perspectives to important societal problems.