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Soler Pastor, Elia


Elia Soler Pastor works as a Research Assistant with ICREA Prof. Veronica Benet-Martinez and is a PhD student at Pompeu Fabra's Department of Political and Social Sciences.

Her thesis project aims at better understanding some psychological processes that are involved in cross-cultural interactions, more specifically exploring: (1) whether and how different types of intercultural experiences (i.e. stereotypical vs. counterstereotypical; more or less engaging) facilitate vs. hinder two key ingredients of social capital: creativity and positive intergroup attitudes; and (2) the interplay and potential moderating/mediating role of individual factors, emotional and personality dispositions in this intercultural experience. She is using data from previous projects that used multiple research designs (experimental, cross-sectional) and types of data (psychological self-reports, physiological data, social networks, qualitative content of narratives).

The project she is currently working in (Interculturalism: Effects on Divergent Thinking and Intergroup Outcomes) and the previous project where she collaborated (Experiencing cultural diversity: the Socio-Cognitive Consequences of Interculturalism), both directed by Prof. Benet-Martinez, aim at understanding the effects that experiencing cultural diversity have on individuals creative skills and on intergroup attitudes. One of the research lines within these projects explores the psychological consequences of multicultural identities and multicultural experiences. The second line of research explores the role of both being exposed to and interacting with stereotypical (vs. counterstereotypical) socio-cultural information.

She also became involved in a project with Prof. Veronica Benet-Martinez and Dacher Keltner from the University of California Berkeley (The Universality of Awe), which looked at cultural experiences of the emotion of "awe".

Elia holds a B.A. in Psychology from Autonomous University of Barcelona (2009), and a M.A. in Immigration Management from the University Pompeu Fabra of Barcelona (2013). She studied a year abroad at the University of California, Santa Barbara (2006-2007).

During her professional experience as a social psychologist, she collaborated in a project financed by the Institute for Minority Rights of EURAC, at the PUC University in Chile. This project aimed to promote the local development of the Mapuche indigenous communities and to enhance the intercultural dialogue and cooperation with the public administration's officials working with them on the field. She also did an internship at the United Nations Gender and Non-Discrimination Program of the International Labour Organization (Torino, Italy). On the other hand, she has worked and volunteered with people at social risk, unemployed people, working mothers and their children, and drug addictions inside the prison system.

Research Interests: Multicultural Identities, polyculturalism, intercultural and intergroup relations, stereotypes, migration, pro-social behavior, emotions and culture.


Research projects

 “Interculturalism: Effects on Divergent Thinking and Intergroup Outcomes”. AEI and FEDER (Spain’s Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness)

"The Universality of awe". UC Berkeley, UPF, Templeton Foundation.

"Experiencing Cultural Diversity: the Socio-Cognitive Consequences of Interculturalism". RecerCaixa.