Dr. Victoria C. Plaut, Lab Director

Dr. Plaut is Professor of Law and Social Science at Berkeley Law and affiliated faculty in Psychology. She received her B.A. in Psychology from Harvard University in 1996, an M.Sc. in Social Psychology at the London School of Economics in 1997, and a Ph.D. at Stanford University in 2003. She taught at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts for two years before joining the faculty at the University of Georgia in 2005, where she was an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology. She moved to Berkeley in 2009, where she held a visiting position from 2009-2010 at Berkeley Law and then became Assistant Professor of Law and Social Science in 2010. Dr. Plaut was a member of the founding leadership team of the Center for Research and Engagement for Diversity at UGA and served on the Board of Trustees of the Center for Advancement and Study of International Education in Atlanta, GA. Having lived in New York, Paris, Atlanta, Boston, London, San Francisco, Athens and now Berkeley and Oakland, and having grown up in a bicultural family (Colombian-American), Dr. Plaut is fascinated by cultural and identity group differences. Moreover, she seeks to understand how differences are psychologically, structurally, and culturally constructed and matter for people’s lived experiences. Her research aims to uncover ways to foster equitable and inclusive diverse environments.

Emily Goldstein, Lab Manager

Prior to joining CDIRL as Lab Manager, Emily was Research Coordinator & Data Analyst for the NIH-funded SF BUILD Grant at UCSF and SFSU. In this role, she managed research focused on the psychosocial outcomes of teaching students about stereotype threat. She completed her B.A. in Industrial Design and M.A. in Linguistics, with an emphasis in Cognitive Science, at San Francisco State University. Her current interests revolve around the application of statistical and machine-learning techniques to social science research questions, especially those related to diversity and inclusion. In her free time she enjoys singing karaoke and birdwatching.


Graduate Students


Kyneshawau Hurd

Kyneshawau is from Texas and earned her B.A. in Psychology from Baylor University in the Baylor Interdisciplinary Core. After undergrad, Kyneshawau became a lab manager at a social psychology lab at UCLA, where she managed studies related to stereotyping, stereotype threat, social identity, and stigma. Now a Ph.D. student in the Jurisprudence and Social Policy program at Berkeley, Kyneshawau continues to research social identity as it relates to diversity and educational policy. Her interests include diversity and inclusion, belonging, identity and the influences of organizational and institutional structure/processes on intra-group relations. 

Celina Romano

Celina, originally from Chicago, earned her B.A. with honors from the University of Michigan. She graduated with a double major in Psychology and Women’s Studies and a minor in Law Justice & Social Change. While at Michigan, Celina was a research assistant in Denise Sekaquaptewa’s Stereotypes and Prejudice Research Interest Group (SPRIG). In the lab, Celina conducted an honors thesis that investigated a psychological intervention to mitigate stereotype threat effects for women in STEM fields. Currently, Celina is a Ph.D. student in the Jurisprudence and Social Policy program at UC-Berkeley, specializing in social psychology. Celina’s research interests include intergroup conflict, diversity & inclusion, discrimination, and intersectionality. More broadly, Celina is interested in both how and why social identity impacts the way individuals and groups experience law.

Asad Rahim

Asad Rahim is a Ph.D. candidate in Berkeley’s Jurisprudence and Social Policy program. Before coming to Berkeley, Asad graduated from Harvard Law School and Babson College–where he won the Roger Babson Award, given to the top student in the graduating class. Between college and law school, Asad worked for a global finance firm in Hong Kong. Today, race is at the heart of his research interests. He is currently working on projects that examine racial identity performance, gender performance and mechanisms of informal social control.


Melissa McCall
Melissa McCall is a PhD student in Berkeley’s Jurisprudence and Social Policy program and a JD candidate at Berkeley Law. Melissa studies legal decision making in asymmetric armed conflict, with a particular interest in how biases related to identity and culture shape perceptions of who is and is not a combatant. 



Rona Murad
Desiree Nayak
Ashley Rodriguez
Maja Ahmann
Jasmine Hsu
Carli Haasbroek
Ebere Arum
Emily Herl
John Knox
Josh Yeung
Kevin Pormir
Yi Liu
Stacey Zhong
Connie Chen
Rachelle Martinez
Minjae Seo
Naomi Fa-Kaji
Justine Plaut
Christina Stevens Carbone
Carla España
Mayra Feddersen
Matt Goren
Michelle Rheinschmidt
Jodi Treadway