In general, I am interested in empirical approaches to understanding ethics and how to influence moral beliefs, feelings, and behaviors.  As a harm-theorist, I view all moral judgments as at least involving harm perception.  Philosophically, I believe suffering is universally bad and that we ought to reduce suffering in the world. I hope that my research helps reduce suffering in the world.

While earning my Ph.D. in Educational Psychology (Applied Cognition and Development) at the University of Georgia, I researched how people think and feel about harming animals indirectly in specific ways (e.g. eating meat and by using disposable plastic), and how to change these thoughts, feelings, and behaviors by framing animals as having minds with more or less agentic qualities (e.g. intelligence, free-will).

For my M.S. in Digital Media at the Georgia Institute of Technology, I researched how digital artifacts, like online petitions, are used rhetorically and how they might be redesigned to better communicate and address perceived injustices.

As a researcher and research software engineer at Wageningen University & Research, I often design and implement software for other researchers. I have found that some researchers do not perceive research software engineers as interdisciplinary researchers capable of formulating and addressing central research questions, but mainly as non-researcher technical support staff that assist them on their research projects by doing software development and data management. This has lead me to begin researching the division of intellectual labor between researchers with and without software development responsibilities, and how codes of conduct for scientific integrity are perceived and implemented by researchers, managers, and non-researcher support staff. I am especially interested in how researchers and research managers interpret and promote scientific integrity with respect to the Netherlands Code of Conduct for Research Integrity.

Research Interests

  • Moral Psychology and Descriptive Ethics
    • Research Ethics
      • Interpretations and Implementation of Netherlands Code of Conduct for Research Integrity
      • Accidental Plagiarism of Research Software
      • Design & Evaluation of Scientific Integrity Training
    • Food Ethics & Animal Ethics
      • Folk Beliefs about Animal Minds (Mind Perception of Animals)
      • Moral Judgements and Moral Emotions (e.g. guilt) about Harming Animals
      • Rationalizations for Harming Animals (e.g., for food, sport)
      • Relationship between Mind Perception of Animals and Moral Motivation to Harm Animals

Research Methods

  • Online Experiments
  • Survey
  • Ethnography


  • Doctoral Dissertation
    • The Influence of Beliefs about Animal Agency on Moral Judgments about Harming Animals
      I researched how beliefs about the minds of animals influence moral concern for harming them in terms of moral judgments, feelings of guilt, and behavioral intentions.
  • Masters Thesis
    • We the undersigned: anonymous dissent and the struggle for personal identity in online petitions

      I researched how online petitions functioned rhetorically.