Research Interests

Justice and Equity

In the 11th century, St. Anselm of Canterbury argued that the will possesses two competing affinities: an affection for what is to a person’s own selfish advantage and an affection for justice. While the first inclination may be stronger, the second one is not far behind.[1]

We see these two competing affinities play out in modern society through the imbalances of power and the establishment of group-based hierarchies reinforced by race, gender, and social class. I posit, that at the root of all injustice is a fundamental yearning to fulfill our own selfish inclinations.

My program of research seeks to provide evidence of this imbalance through the use of empirical field studies. Some potential research topics and questions include:

  1. Why are there such divergent views of progress between racial groups?

  2. Why diversity messaging from organizations can cause tensions for the marginalized groups being promoted, and can led to further inequitable outcomes?

  3. How the idea of a meritocracy distracts from systemic inequalities (i.e., overemphasis on the individual’s agency over their environment).

  1. Hatfield, E., Rapson, R. L., & Aumer-Ryan, K. (2008). Social justice in love relationships: Recent developments. Social Justice Research, 21(4), 413-431.