Adjunct Assistant Professor Janxin Leu

(It's pronounced "Jen-shing Loo.")


I am a design-influenced psychologist who leads projects at HopeLab that focus on promoting health and well-being among youth through tech-enabled social innovation. I joined HopeLab to “activate the Wonder Twin powers of behavioral science and human-centered design to empower healthy lives.” In close collaboration with partners in healthcare, wellness, and education, I lead multi-disciplinary teams to innovate strategic solutions, research and define new opportunity areas, and develop partnerships across a broad range of challenges.  

Translating what's known in science about how to motivate behavior change and model health behaviors is my passion.  For example, I created the curriculum for the Emmy-nominated Nick, Jr. show “Ni hao, Kai-lan!” based on research on biculturalism.

I have degrees in psychology, anthropology, and art from Stanford University and the University of Michigan, and was elected a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health & Society Scholar.  I'm an elected member of the Society for Experimental Social Psychology.



Selected Publications:


Yang, J.P.*, Leu, J., Simoni, J.M., Chen, W.T., Shiu, C.S., Zhao, H. (2015).  Please Don’t Make Me Ask for Help: Implicit Social Support and Mental Health in Chinese Individuals Living with HIV.  AIDS and Behavior, 19(8), 1501-509.  Doi:  10.1007/s10461-015 1051-y.

Obradović, J., Strayer, N.T., & Leu, J. (2013). The importance of family and friend relationships for the mental health of Asian immigrant young adults and their nonimmigrant peers. Research in Human Development, 10(2), 163-183.

Leu, J., Schroth, C.*, Obradovic, J., & Cruz, R.A.* (2012). Family assistance attitudes and family cultural conflict: A comparative study of second-generation Asian American and native-born European American young adults. Asian American Journal of Psychology Special Issue: Culture, Context, and Mental Health, 3(3), 133-144.

Leu, J., Wang, J.,* & Koo, K.* (2011).  Are positive emotions just as “positive” across cultures? Emotion, 11(4), 994-999.  Doi: 10.1037/a0021332

Leu, J., Walton, E., & Takeuchi, D. (2011).  Contextualizing acculturation: Gender, family, and community reception influences on Asian immigrant mental health.  American Journalof Community Psychology, 48 (3-4), 168-180.  Doi:  10.1007/s10464-010-9360-7

Wang, J.*, Leu, J., & Shoda, Y. (2011).  When seemingly innocuous behaviors “sting”: Racial microaggressions and their emotional consequences.  Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 37(12), 1666-1678.

Cruz, R.*, King, K., Widaman, K. Leu, J., Cauce, A., & Conger, R. (2011).  Cultural influences on positive father involvement in two-parent Mexican-origin families.  Journal of Family Psychology, 731-740.

Leu, J., Mesquita, B., Ellsworth, P.C., Zhang, Z.Y., Yuan, H.J., Buchtel, E., et al.  (2010).  Situational differences in dialectical emotion: Boundary conditions in a cultural comparison of North Americans and East Asians. Cognition and Emotion, 24(3), 419-435. 

Nuru-Jeter, A., Dominguez, T.P., Hammond, W.P., Leu, J., Skaff, M., Egerter, S., Jones, C.P.,& Braveman, P.   (2009). “It's the skin you're in”: African American women talk about their experiences of racism. An exploratory study to develop measures of racism for birth outcome studies.   Maternal and Child Health, 13, 29–39.

Leu, J., Yen, I., Gansky, S., Walton, E., Adler, N. & Takeuchi, D. (2008).  The Association between subjective social status and mental health among Asian immigrants: Investigating the influence of age at immigration. Social Science and Medicine, 66 (5), 1152-1164. 

Masuda, T., Ellsworth, P.C., Mesquita, B., Leu, J., Tanida, S. & Van de Veerdonk, E. (2008). Placing the face in context: Cultural differences in the perception of facial emotion.  Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 94 (3), 365–381.

Benet-Martínez, V., Lee, F., & Leu, J. (2006). Biculturalism and cognitive complexity: Expertise in cultural representations. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 37 (4), 386-407.

Chua, H. F., Leu, J., & Nisbett, R.E. (2005). Culture and diverging views of social events. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 31 (7), 925-934. 

Mahalingam, R. & Leu, J.  (2005).  Culture, essentialism, displacement and representations of gender.  Theory and Psychology, 15 (6), 839-860. 

Benet-Martínez, V., Leu, J., Lee, F, & Morris, M. (2002). Negotiating biculturalism: Cultural frame-switching in biculturals with 'Oppositional' vs. 'Compatible' cultural identities. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 33 (4), 492-516. 

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