Canada Research Chair in Population Well-being
Department of Psychology, University of Toronto
Field of Study: Social and Personality
Area of Interest:
• Population determinants of a satisfying, purposeful, and engaging life;
• Income inequality, income redistribution, and income mobility;
• Social unrest, terrorism, and civil war;
• Major population events;
• Replication, Open science, and Meta-science
Lab Manager + Analyst
Hi! I’m not Keith/Kenneth/Kennith, but you can call me Kangaroo 🙂 . I’m the manager and data analyst of the lab. I hold a Bachelor’s degree in Physics and a Master’s degree in Linguistics. Fun fact, I’m not quinquelingual, but I’m fluent in Hong Kong Sign Language. I was also a presnter in a TV program about sign language and Deaf culture!
Lab Manager + Researcher
Hey! I’m Casey, the lab manager at PWB, currently researching well-being trends in Canada and overseas. My journey at PWB started with my BCB430 independent research project researching depression and anxiety symptom trajectories. Now a UofT graduate, I’m continuing to pursue my research interests in well-bIeing determinants in different countries of interest. Outside of the lab, I’m a Harley Davidson t-shirt collector, concert go-er, themed-party lover, and board game player!
Gwen is a postdoc in the PWB lab interested in cultural differences in well-being. She completed her Ph.D. at the University of California, Riverside with David Funder with a focus on person-culture fit and well-being. Afterwards she lived in Germany for 2 years as a Humboldt Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Bielefeld University. Outside of the lab she enjoys reading, playing board games, and exploring new places.
Hello! I’m Elizabeth, and I am first-year PhD student. I completed by HBSc in psychology at the University of Toronto. I am broadly interested in how well-being relates to current social, economic, and political affairs. I also have a line of research examining time use and well-being. Outside of the lab, I enjoy watching basketball, ordering the same dishes at new restaurants, and doing jigsaw puzzles.
Levi D. Stutzman
My name is Levi and I’m a first-year PhD student. I hold a B.A. in psychology and philosophy from York University (Toronto, Canada), an M.A. in applied linguistics from the University of Nottingham (Ningbo, China), and an M.Sc. in the cognitive neuroscience of language from the Basque Center on Cognition, Brain and Language at the University of the Basque Country (Donostia/San Sebastián, Spain). Having lived abroad in several different countries and experiencing different political systems, I’m now interested in how a country’s democratic backsliding affects the well-being of its citizenry. I enjoy travelling, reading, watching movies, and listening to podcasts.
My name is Anthony McCanny. I’m a fourth year undergraduate student majoring in Economics and Ecology. I’m currently working on an independent research project on the impact of government spending and income on affective well-being. I’m fascinated by alternatives to consumption and GDP as measures of well-being in economics and how these alternatives influence economic models and policy decisions. By day I clean datasets and run regressions, by night I write kid’s books and play ukulele.
Hi! I’m Sofia. I’m a first-year PhD student doing research at the intersection of psychometrics, well-being, and mental health. I hold an Honours B.A in Psychology from the University of Toronto. I primarily work with secondary data analysis of large longitudinal datasets like the Gallup World Poll. I am interested in leveraging a combination of Big Data with rich qualitative interviews to develop individual well-being profiles and personalized well-being interventions. When I’m not in the lab, I enjoy exploring Toronto, listening to podcasts, and practicing piano.
Yuchen (Helena) Qin
Hi, my name is Helena, and I’m a fourth-year student in the Psychology Research Specialist Program and the Physiology Major Program. I’m currently a volunteer in the Population Well-Being Lab, and my research interests include well-being, romantic relationships, and singlehood. Outside of the lab, I enjoy watching movies, singing, and painting.
Freeman is a fourth-year undergrad at U of T specializing in psychology and minoring in philosophy and ecology. He is still exploring what he wants to do with his psychology degree after graduation – hopefully something related to mental health. In his spare time, he likes to play basketball, draw, and think about random things.
My name is Makoto and I am a second year undergrad studying Statistics, Economics, and Computer Science. I am a research assistant in the PWB Lab, currently investigating topics at the intersection of population well-being, economics, and statistics. I spend my free time obsessing over baseball, and it is my goal to visit all 30 MLB stadiums before I graduate!
Tiffany is a third-year psychology specialist and physiology minor. She is working in the lab as a research opportunities program student and is interested in clinical psychology, developmental psychology, and their relationship with well-being. Outside of the lab, Tiffany is the co-secretary of the Psychology Students’ Association, a cannon guard, and a receptionist at University College residences.
Natalie is currently a second year ROP student specialising in psychology and minoring in economics. She is interested in researching how wellbeing is mediated by varying cultural and social circumstances, as well as what constitutes a happy, meaningful life. In her free time, she enjoys playing and listening to music, napping, and exploring the city!
Anna earned her master’s degree in psychology from Leipzig University in Germany and joined the lab for a research stay. She plans on entering a PhD program in Germany afterwards. She pursues her interest in Positive Psychology and is interested in factors that contribute to higher well-being and how major individual or population events affect well-being. Besides her studies, she loves the outdoors, sports like Yoga and climbing and reading and spending time with others.
Kenneth Bashualdo Torres
Kenneth is entering his fourth year at the University of Toronto and is majoring in Cognitive Science and minoring in Digital Humanities & Statistics. He is interested in managing data sets and creating interactive graphs in order to display research findings. In his spare time, he likes to play football, listen to music, and try new local restaurants.
Hi! My name is William and I’m a second-year student at U of T studying computer science and economics. It’s my first year at PWB, and I’m hoping to use machine learning tools to investigate the relationship between democratic backsliding and well-being. Outside of the lab, I’m part of the You’re Next Career Network and enjoy performing and writing music! Sometimes those musical projects end up on YouTube and I spend too long looking at the analytics.
Fatima Ali (she/her) is an undergraduate student at the University of Toronto studying human biology, psychology, and applied statistics. Her professional interests include data analytics, population health & wellbeing and epidemiology. Outside of academia, Fatima enjoys volunteering in her community to support grassroots research and education initiatives, exploring new worlds through the written word, and yarn crafts.
My name is Xu Xinyi, a student in UofT studying Bioinformatics Specialist and Statistic Major. I am interested in drug discovery and data analysis. I am mostly an indoor person, I love culturing plants and I usually play computer games or bake cakes during my spare time.
Katie is an aspiring mixed-methods researcher with experience in multiple disciplines – including psychology, neuroscience, public policy, and international development. She is pursuing two projects in the lab: her thesis seeks to examine novel trajectories of subjective wellbeing towards death in a Chinese dataset, and her individual project aims to qualitatively understand what ‘a perfect life’ looks like in the present among students at a university in Toronto, Canada. In her spare time, Katie is an avid consumer of bad reality TV and the soapiest dramas China has to offer.
Muhammad Hamza Khan
Hi! My name is Muhammad, and I am a fourth-year undergraduate student pursuing a double major in Economics and Public Policy, with a Focus in Data Analytics and a Minor in Political Science.
At the Population Well-being Lab, I am researching how GDP is linked with subjective well-being within and across countries around the world. Specifically, I am trying to see if the Easterlin Paradox exists, using results from the Gallup World Poll.
Outside of the lab, I enjoy listening to podcasts, and trying new fried chicken places around the City!
Independent Research Project
Hi, my name is Jessie! I’m a 4th year undergraduate student majoring in Psychology at The Chinese University of Hong Kong. I will be going to the University of Toronto as an exchange student to work on my independent research project. In my free time, I like trying out new restaurants and sightseeing!!
Ria is a third year undergraduate Mathematical Physics student at the University of Waterloo. In the past, she’s worked at Canada’s particle accelerator and various quantum computing projects in both an academic and industry setting. Her main interests lie within evaluating and guiding policy regarding wellbeing. Outside of research, you can find her hiking, playing the piano or working on digital or acrylic-based art pieces.
Cookie is a 3rd year Psychology specialist and Fundamental genetics major. Her research interests fall across multiple disciplines, like social psych, personality psych, and genetics, as she explores the ultimate question of “What makes us who we are?”. Outside of academia, she enjoys badminton, cycling in nature, learning Japanese culture, and playing Switch.
Yiyang (Victoria) Huang
Hi! My name is Yiyang, and I am currently a first-year master’s student in the Faculty of Information studying Human-Centred Data Science. I did my undergraduate studies at UofT in applied statistics and mathematics with a focus in economics. My research interests include well-being and public health related topics. In my spare, I enjoy exploring new restaurants and spending time cuddling with my cat.
Hey! I’m Amanda. I’m a second-year student in the Statistics Specialist Program (with Focus in Health Studies) and the Mathematics Major Program. I’m currently a volunteer in the Population Well-Being Lab. I am interested in managing data sets and building different statistics model. In my free time, I enjoy watching Netflix and reading detective stories.
Hi, my name is Rachel! I am a third-year psychology research specialist interested in the factors that determine the well-being of neurotypical and neurodivergent individuals. I am also particularly passionate about how social development influences determinants of well-being. Apart from research, I enjoy travelling and exploring local coffee spots!
Manhal Sultana is a 4th year Honours B.Sc. student at the University of Toronto, with a Specialist in Psychology. She is a research assistant with the Population Well-Being lab, where she is currently exploring vaccine hesitancy amongst the pandemic. Her research interests are in psychopathology, neurocognitive disorders, and promoting psychological well-being. Outside of the lab, she is a research trainee at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), where she focuses on disease management within schizophrenia patients.
Leuven is a third year undergrad studying for a major in statistics with minors in political science and philosophy. His passion is to combine his subject matters together by using statistical analyses and theoretical considerations to inform policy-based research. At the PWB lab, he is currently working on an independent project linking the recent phenomenon of global democratic recession to subjective well-being. An eager learner, he is fascinated by the causes of democratic and authoritarian movements worldwide as well as major international affairs. At the same time, he is totally down to talk about Star Wars.
Hello! My name is Jialin and I’m entering my fourth year of the psychology specialist program in the fall. I’ll be completing a thesis in the Population Well-being Lab this year. My research interests are varied and span mental, emotional and physical health-related topics. In my free time, I enjoy reading, playing games, and learning languages.
Hi, my name is Amanda Solomon and I am a third-year independent project student in the Population Well-Being Lab. I am a Psychology Specialist and Buddhism, Psychology, and Mental Health Minor. My research interests include well-being and election outcomes, which I am currently studying, as well as income inequality and class based differences in well-being. Outside of the lab I love photography and collecting records. A fun fact about me is that I am a twin!
Hi! My name is Hajar Seiyad (she/her), and I’m working on an independent project with this lab. I’m a 4th-year undergraduate student doing a double major in Mental Health Studies and Political Science. My research interests include youth mental health, disparities in health and educational outcomes, memory, and perception. In my free time I enjoy reading and baking!
Jeff is in his second year of the Education Leadership and Policy program (ELP) MEd program at UofT. Currently a research assistant in the PWB Lab, Jeff’s main role is curriculum development for the Population Well-Being course. Outside of the lab, Jeff has recently been fascinated with the potential efficacy and applications of e-learning and the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on K-12 school systems in general. In his free time, he enjoys reading, playing games, and making/listening to/pointlessly arguing about music.
I am a first-time volunteer with the PWB lab, and I’m starting my third year of undergrad majoring in International Relations and Criminology. My main interests are in comparative law and in the different ways that justice systems reinforce inequalities. I’m hoping to translate this into a lab-related project on how societal well-being affects the frequency of crime and other deviant behaviours. Lastly, some things that make me happy are: puzzles, pets (I have three!) and playing the piano… and alliteration 🙂