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Piercarlo Valdesolo

Piercarlo Valdesolo

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My research program investigates the role of emotion in social judgment, with a specific focus on how affective processes shape moral decisions and prosocial/antisocial behavior at both the individual and intergroup levels.

I view morality as serving a social function and am interested in the discrete emotional states which are thought to have evolved to promote adaptive behavior and decision making in the moral domain (e.g. compassion, jealousy, gratitude, embarrassment).

I am currently conducting two lines of research. One focuses on the role of synchronous movement in arousing prosocial emotional responses to victims of moral transgressions (as well as the effect of synchrony more generally on promoting social skills). The second looks at the psychological biases that contribute to unethical decision making and corruption within institutions and organizations (e.g. medicine, law, politics). Both lines of research emphasize the importance of social processes in moral judgment and behavior relative to the importance of principled reasoning.

Primary Interests:

  • Emotion, Mood, Affect
  • Ethics and Morality
  • Group Processes
  • Helping, Prosocial Behavior
  • Intergroup Relations
  • Interpersonal Processes
  • Judgment and Decision Making
  • Organizational Behavior
  • Social Cognition

Research Group or Laboratory:

Journal Articles:

  • Desteno, D. A., Valdesolo, P., & Bartlett, M. Y. (2006). Jealousy and the threatened self: Getting to the heart of the green-eyed monster. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 91(4), 626-641.
  • Jamieson, J.P., Valdesolo, P. & Peters, B. (in press). Sympathy for the devil? The physiological and psychological effects of being an agent (and target) of dissent during intragroup conflict. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology.
  • Lerner, J., Li, Y., Valdesolo. P, & Kassam, K., (in press) Emotion and Decision Making. Annual Review of Psychology. Vol. 66
  • Valdesolo, P., & DeSteno, D. (2011). Synchrony and the social tuning of compassion. Emotion, 11(2), 262.
  • Valdesolo, P., & DeSteno, D. A. (2011). Synchrony and the social tuning of compassion. Emotion, 11(2), 262-266.
  • Valdesolo, P., & DeSteno, D. A. (2008). The duality of virtue: Deconstructing the moral hypocrite. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 44(5), 1334-1338.
  • Valdesolo, P., & DeSteno, D. A. (2007). Moral hypocrisy: Social groups and the flexibility of virtue. Psychological Science, 18(8), 689-690.
  • Valdesolo, P., & DeSteno, D. A. (2006). Manipulations of emotional context shape moral decision making. Psychological Science, 17(6), 476-477.
  • Valdesolo, P., & Graham, J. (2014). Awe, uncertainty, and agency detection. Psychological Science, 25(1), 170-178.
  • Valdesolo, P., Ouyang, J., & DeSteno, D. A. (2010). The rhythm of joint action: Synchrony promotes cooperative ability. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 46, 693.

Courses Taught:

  • Psychology of Morality
  • Research Methods
  • Social Function of Emotion
  • Social Psychology
  • Statistics and Experimental Design

Piercarlo Valdesolo
Department of Psychology
Claremont McKenna College
850 Columbia Avenue
Claremont, California 91711
United States

  • Home: (626) 399-0514
  • Mobile: (978) 407-2463

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