I recently finished my PhD at University of California, San Diego, in experimental developmental psychology with a specialization in anthropogeny.

I am currently working under Dr. Cristine Legare as the Project Manager and Postdoctoral Researcher for Project RISE: harnessing Ritual to Improve Service delivery and Empower health workers. The objective of this project is to improve maternal and child health in India and is funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Through my nonprofit organization, Nurturely, we are conducting intervention studies to understand the effect of mother-infant physical contact on breastfeeding exclusivity, postpartum depression, and mother-infant bonding.

My graduate fieldwork was conducted in Vanuatu, Bolivia, and Guatemala.I am passionate about the importance of broadening our perspective on psychology and human development by incorporating perspectives from human evolution and human cultures around the world. Given that the majority of research in developmental psychology comes from Western, educated, industrialized, rich, and democratic – “WEIRD”- communities (Henrich, Heinz, & Norenzayan, 2010) and only 7% of articles in top-tier developmental journals feature data from participants outside of Western countries (Nielsen & Legare, 2015), it is critical to expand our knowledge of human behavior and develop to better meet the needs of infants and their caregivers around the world.

 

Research Interests

Cultural variation in mother-infant interaction

Effects of mother-infant physical contact 

Responsiveness to feeding cues

Psychological predictors of breastfeeding motivation

Breastfeeding interaction

Cultural variation in social expectations

Screen interactions

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