James Wages, Ph.D.

Social Psychologist


Broadly, I study what people think about other people. This includes the beliefs we hold about social groups and how we make sense of decisions made by ourselves and others. Social psychologists could characterize my research as being at the intersection of social cognition, stereotyping, and decision-making. My primary work investigates how people make meaning of risk-taking and whether such meanings are imbued with social connotations. My work in this area was recently accepted for publication in the prestigious Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, finding that people's conceptions of risk-taking are imbedded with racial stereotype content. I also study the nature of social bias (such as racial and gender biases), including how people think about social bias in others and how to reduce social bias. I am eager to continue these lines of research and beyond with students interested in gaining research experience in social psychology. I warmly welcome students to reach out to me for research opportunities.


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Systemic considerations in child development and the pursuit of racial equality in the United States

S. P. Perry, Skinner-Dorkenoo A. L., J. E. Wages III, J. L. Abaied

Psychological Inquiry, (In Press)

Testing a self‐affirmation intervention for improving the psychosocial health of Black and White medical students in the United States

S. P. Perry, J. E. Wages III, A. L. Skinner‐Dorkenoo, S. E. Burke, R. R. Hardeman, S. M. Phelan

Journal of Social Issues: Special Issue on Self-Affirmation Theory in Educational Contexts, 2021, pp. 1-32

Affective disgust predicts blame for gay male homicide victims

E. A. Quinn, A. L. Skinner-Dorkenoo, J. E. Wages III

Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 2021

Reckless gambles and responsible ventures: Racialized prototypes of risk-taking

J. E. Wages III, S. P. Perry, A. L. Skinner-Dorkenoo, G. V. Bodenhausen

Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 2021

Zero-sum beliefs of racial progress

S. P. Perry, J. E. Wages III

Nature Human Behaviour: News & Views, 2020, pp. 130-131