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Lee, Spike

Lee, Spike


Spike W.S. Lee, born in Hong Kong, in 1984. Ph.D. from the University of Michigan. Assistant Professor of Marketing at the University of Toronto.

Theme Group Fellow (1 February 2015 – 30 April 2015)

Mind, Body, and Social Support

Research Question

From a metaphorical perspective, the abstract psychological experience of social support is likely to be grounded in concrete experiences with the physical world. Accordingly, does being physically supported have spill over effects, leading people to feel more socially supported? I will explore this mental association along various dimensions, including spatial location, bodily posture, and physical touch.

Project Description

By running relatively simple lab and field experiments, I will answer questions such as: Do incidental cues of being backed up promote a sense of social support? Does disrupting the upright posture elicit people’s need for social support? Does softly touching an inanimate object, or touching the same thing that others have touched, confer supportive feelings? Are touch effects on supportive feelings, risk-taking behaviours, and health outcomes stronger the higher people are on touch sensitivity and the less space people are supposed to maintain in daily situations according to their cultural norms? Overall, my focus will be on the physical cues and consequences of social support.

Selected Publications

1) Lee, S. W. S., & Schwarz, N. (2010). Washing away postdecisional dissonance. Science, 328, 709.

2) Lee, S. W. S., & Schwarz, N. (2010). Dirty hands and dirty mouths: Embodiment of the moral-purity metaphor is specific to the motor modality involved in moral transgression. Psychological Science, 21, 1423-1425.

3) Lee, S. W. S., & Schwarz, N. (2014). Framing love: When it hurts to think we were made for each other. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 54, 61-67.

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