LAB MEMBERS
*I will not be accepting students for Fall 2022*

Dr. Matt Baldwin

Assistant Professor

Matt received his B.A. in Psychology from Miami University and his Ph.D. in Social Psychology from the University of Kansas. He then spent four years as a post doctoral fellow at the Social Cognition Center Cologne, University of Cologne, Germany. Matt joined the faculty at UF in 2019. His research explores the dynamic interaction between people and the worlds they inhabit. How do people influence the worlds they live in, and how do those worlds influence people in return? Some topics of interest include political ideology and polarization, the temporal self, nostalgia, authenticity, and socio-ecological processes.

Abhay Alaukik

Graduate Student

Lab Manager

Hello! My name is Abhay Alaukik and I am a second-year graduate student in the lab. I received my B.A. in Psychology from the University of Kansas. In general, my research interests lie in the domain of moral and political psychology, decision-making, and advanced quantitative methods. In my current projects, I’m (1) exploring how polarization and extremism are produced due to the kind of decision task undertaken, (2) studying how people think about freedom using multidimensional scaling (MDS) and how that affects their behavior, and (3) evaluating how seeing others express moral outrage that align with our own ideals – vicarious moral outrage – affects us.


In my free time, you will catch me in random places – on a trail, in the local barber shop (trying to get a cheap deal), learning new languages, playing ping-pong or listening to audiobooks. Feel free to contact me with anything you would want to discuss!

Josh Perlin

Graduate Student

Josh Perlin is a second-year graduate student in the Self, Mind, and Society Lab. He attended Emory University for his undergraduate degree, earning a B.A. in Psychology with a minor in Ethics. At Emory, he worked in Dr. Robyn Fivush’s Family Narratives Lab, where he cultivated an interest in approaching the self as an ongoing story through time. After graduating, he was a lab manager for the Identity and Diversity Lab at Duke University under the direction of Dr. Sarah Gaither. His research interests concern how linking the self to the past and future through storytelling can promote the good life. Additionally, he is interested in how religions provide form and content for the construction of a “good life story”. When he is not thinking about the good life, he attempts to live it by participating in his faith community, reading widely, spending time with friends and family, and listening to Americana music.

Eva Garcia-Ferres, M.A.

Graduate Student

I am a first year PhD student. I received my B.A. from Ithaca College in 2018 and my M.A. from New York University in 2020. My research interests revolve around politics, affective cognition, morality and group identity. More specifically, I am interested in how people’s attachments to group identities influence people’s perceptions and responses to in-group moral transgressions. I am also interested in the role of social imagination and its role in promoting or undermining the status quo.

Ashley Krause

Graduate Student

My name is Ashley, and I am a first-year PhD student. I received my B.A. from Francis Marion University in 2020. My broad research interests are about how places (regions, states, countries) influence people, their perception of ideals and values, and individual differences. Other topics I am interested in are political and moral psychology and anything to do with the self! In my free time, I love to hang out with my doggos, ride my bike, and complete jigsaw puzzles. 

Samantha Zaw

Lab Manager

Samantha Zaw (she/her) is a 4th year student majoring in Psychology at the University of Florida. Broadly speaking, Sam’s areas of research interest include self and identity, romantic and sexual relationships, motivation, and positive psychology. In Fall 2019, she was admitted to the UF Emerging Scholars Program and examined how temporal self-comparisons—and the comparison-based self-evaluations—influence self-concept clarity. Currently, she is a Ronald E. McNair Scholar and is working on a project which explores the link between self-gratitude and character virtue development. After receiving her B.S. in Psychology, Sam aims to pursue a Ph.D. in Social Psychology.