Assistant Professor Political Science

Dr. Pierce Ekstrom joined the Department of Political Science in Fall 2020. He studies the causes and consequences of political disagreement. On the "cause" side, he is particularly interested in how psychological individual differences give rise to diverse political preferences and in how individuals' moral values and politicized identities create outright conflict from these differences of opinion. As for "consequences," he is interested in both the desirable and undesirable effects of political disagreement. On the one hand, disagreement can push people (and even whole societies) to critically re-evaluate their existing beliefs and practices. On the other hand, the conflicts that generally accompany disagreement can bias how people interact with each other, share information, and evaluate political leaders.


2018 Ph.D. in Social Psychology. University of Minnesota
2012 B.A. in Psychology and Political Science. University of Chicago

Prior Employment

2018-2020 Postdoctoral Research Associate. Calvin Lai's Diversity Science Lab. Washington University in St. Louis

Research Areas

Political Psychology
Political disagreement and conflict
Moral beliefs, values, and convictions
Social identity

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