Lora Park, Ph.D.
Summary of Research Interests
My research program focuses broadly on questions pertaining to the self, motivation, and interpersonal processes. Specifically, my research examines how aspects of the person (e.g., self-esteem, contingencies of self-worth, rejection sensitivity, social roles) interact with situations to affect outcomes such as motivation, performance, interpersonal functioning, and well-being. One line of research (funded by NSF) examines how the pursuit of romantic goals affects women’s interest in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) – fields in which women are typically underrepresented – and examines the types of contexts that boost motivation and interest in STEM. Additional projects examine the consequences of basing self-worth in valued domains; the effects of being sensitive to rejection based on physical appearance; and the impact of sociocultural factors in shaping psychological experience.
- Park, L.E., Young, A.F., & Eastwick, P.W. (in press). (Psychological) distance makes the heart grow fonder: Effects of psychological distance and relative intelligence on men’s attraction to women. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin.
- Park, L.E., Eastwick, P.W., Young, A.F., Troisi, J.D., & Streamer, L. (in press). Desirable but not smart: Preference for smarter romantic partners impairs women’s STEM outcomes. Journal of Applied Social Psychology.
- Park, L.E., Streamer, L., Huang, L., & Galinsky, A.D. (2013). Stand tall, but don’t put your feet up: Universal and culturally-specific effects of expansive postures on power. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 49, 965-971.
- Park, L. E., Young, A. F., Troisi, J. D., & Pinkus, R. T. (2011). Effects of everyday romantic goal pursuit on women’s attitudes toward math and science. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 37, 1259-1273.
- Park, L. E. (2010). Responses to self-threat: Linking self and relational constructs with approach and avoidance motivation. Social and Personality Psychology Compass, 4, 201-221.
- Park, L. E., & Maner, J. K. (2009). Does self-threat promote social connection? The role of self-esteem and contingencies of self-worth. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 96, 203-217.
- Park, L. E., & Pinkus, R. T. (2009). Interpersonal effects of appearance-based rejection sensitivity. Journal of Research in Personality, 43, 602-612.
- Park, L. E. (2007). Appearance-based rejection sensitivity: Implications for mental and physical health, affect, and motivation. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 33, 490-504.
- Park, L. E., Crocker, J., & Kiefer, A. K. (2007). Contingencies of self-worth, academic failure, and goal pursuit. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 33, 1503-1517.
- Park, L. E., & Crocker, J. (2005). Interpersonal consequences of seeking self-esteem. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 11, 1587-1598.
- Crocker, J., & Park, L.E. (2004). The costly pursuit of self-esteem. Psychological Bulletin, 130, 392–414.