I study how people navigate social interactions and relationships with others by examining patterns in how people use language and speech acts when they communicate with one another. In some cases, I apply the lens of game theory to better understand how people subtly coordinate (or fail to coordinate) in conversations. I’m interested in the downstream consequences these behaviors have in contexts important for organizations like conflict management, negotiations, teamwork, and customer satisfaction.
Some questions I’m currently interested in include:
- How do the dynamics of apologizing change when blame is mutual instead of unilateral?
- Why is thanking close others seen as rude or aversive in some cultures?
- Can signaling self-awareness through speech help low-credibility speakers self-promote better?
- What linguistic features of apologies are necessary for people to recognize an utterance as an apology?
- In responses to customer reviews, do managers need to apologize to make readers satisfied with their response?