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BoKyung Park

BoKyung Park

I am accepting PhD candidates currently
Assistant Professor

Research Interests: Social, cultural, and emotional factors that shape individuals’ moral judgments and subsequent social decisions; underlying neural mechanisms

GR 4.214
Social Psychology Research on INtercultural Groups Lab (SPRING Lab)
Curriculum Vitae

Not currently accepting undergraduate students


Professional Preparation

Ph.D. - Affective Science
Stanford University - 2017
MA - Social Psychology
Seoul National University - 2012
BA - Psychology
Seoul National University - 2009

Research Areas

Culture and Moral Judgment
Moral psychology is a recently emerging and rapidly growing field. As a result, there has not been much active research on the cultural shaping of individuals’ moral judgments. Our lab aims to change that. For example, how do people from different cultures form and update impressions about others’ moral characters? How does culture explain people’s varied reliance on information about others’ personalities and situations when making moral judgments? How do people from different cultures make judgments about violations of moral values such as fairness or loyalty? Would these differences be reflected in their national legal systems and criminal sentences?
Culture and Theory-of-Mind (ToM)
People think about what others are thinking. They put themselves in others’ shoes deliberately or spontaneously and try to take others’ perspectives. Our lab studies how this process can be shaped by an individual’s cultural background. For example, would knowing information about another’s disposition, instead of their situation, facilitate ToM better for people from a certain cultural context? Would this manifest in an individual’s subsequent social interactions, such as their empathetic responses toward, prosocial behaviors for, and/or moral judgments about others?
Culture and Ingroup Bias
Ingroup bias, the tendency to perceive one’s ingroup members more positively than outgroup members, supports maintaining close relationships and the survival of one’s group. The specific benefits and drawbacks of ingroup bias for individuals’ mental and physical well-being have been understudied, as well as how their cultural background influences the effect of ingroup bias on well-being. Would people from cultures that value collectivism acquire greater social and health benefits by expressing ingroup bias? If people immigrate to a different culture, how does their acculturation predict the effect of ingroup bias on their social and health outcomes?


Park, B., Fareri, D., Delgado, M., & Young, L. (2021). The role of right temporo-parietal junction in processing social prediction error across relationship contexts. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 16(8), 772-781.  - publications
Park, B.†, Kim, M.†, & Young, L. (2021). An examination of accurate versus “biased” mentalizing in moral and economic decision-making. In Gilead, M. & Ochsner, K. N. (Eds). The Neural Basis of Mentalizing (pp. 537-554). New York: Springer.  - publications
Kim, M., Park, B., & Young, L. (2020). The psychology of motivated versus rational impression updating. Trends in Cognitive Science, 24(2), 101-111.  - publications
Park, B., Genevsky, A., Knutson, B., & Tsai, J. L. (2020). Culturally-valued facial expressions enhance loan request success. Emotion, 20(7), 1137-1153.  - publications
Park, B., & Young, L. (2020). An association between biased impression updating and relationship facilitation: A behavioral and fMRI investigation. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 87, 103916  - publications
Park, B., Blevins, E., Knutson, B., & Tsai, J. (2017). Neurocultural evidence that ideal affect match promotes giving. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 12(7), 1083-1096.  - publications
Park, B., Tsai, J. L., Chim, L., Blevins, E., & Knutson, B. (2016). Neural evidence for cultural differences in the valuation of positive facial expressions. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 11(2), 243-252. - publications


Assistant Professor
University of Texas at Dallas [2020–Present]
Postdoctoral Scholar
Boston College [2017–2020]