A special context within which one’s goal pursuit takes place is the broader society. Our pursuit of important goals shape and are shaped by aspects related to the community, politics, and the socio-economic environment.

Our lab examines the dynamic interplay between people’s motivated pursuit and factors of societal import. Sample questions that we study are:

What are the motivational underpinnings of national identification?
How are people’s attitude toward outgroups (e.g., minority races, immigrants) shaped by their ongoing goal pursuit?
What motivates people to engage in intergroup conflict?

  • Hou, M., Jia, L., & Tan J. (under review). To tip off or not? Predicting gatekeepers’ reporting of deviant behaviors through desirability and feasibility considerations. Motivation Science.

  • Yong, J. J., Jia, L., Ismail, I. & Lee, P. (under review). Conditional Love: Attitudes toward Immigrants Depend on Their Perceived Instrumentality to Locals’ Basic Psychological Needs. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin.

  • Jia, L., Karpen, S. C., & Hirt, E. R. (2011). Beyond anti-Muslim sentiment: Opposing the Ground Zero Mosque as a means to pursuing a stronger America. Psychological Science, 22, 1327-1335.