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Lab Members

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Stanford Psychophysiology Lab 2021 lab meeting via Zoom


James Gross

James Gross is the Ernest R. Hilgard Professor of Psychology at Stanford University, where he directs the Stanford Psychophysiology Laboratory. James earned his BA in philosophy from Yale University and his PhD in clinical psychology from the University of California, Berkeley. His research focuses on emotion regulation, and he has received a number of teaching awards, including the Dean’s Award for Distinguished Teaching, the Phi Beta Kappa Teaching Prize, the Stanford Postdoctoral Mentoring Award (twice), and Stanford’s highest teaching award, the Walter J. Gores Award for Excellence in Teaching.  James also has received research awards from the American Psychological Association, the Society for Psychophysiological Research, and the Social and Affective Neuroscience Society, as well as an Honorary Doctorate from UC Louvain, Belgium. James has over 500 publications, which have been cited over 150,000 times. James is founding President for the Society for Affective Science, Co-Editor-in-Chief of Affective Science, and a Fellow in the Association for Psychological Science and the American Psychological Association. 


Alan Brown

Alan is a research coordinator within the Department of Psychology at Stanford University. He earned his BA in psychology with honors from Stanford University in 2020. He is currently managing the Stanford Home Sleep Study, investigating the relationship between nighttime sleep tendencies (with an emphasis on sleep bruxism) and daytime emotion regulation processes. Other areas of interest include organizational psychology, management, marketing, user experience, political strategy, and cross-cultural connections. He is a strong supporter of carbonated water.

Bee David

Bee provides all administrative support to Profs Gross, Walton, Goodman and Thomas.  This also includes students and research groups in the areas of travel and human subject reimbursements, payments of invoices, verification of PCard and Travel card transactions.  She also handles domestic and foreign travel arrangements and in charge of ordering supplies in the area.  She process Visiting Student Researcher and Visiting Scholar paper works.

Bee has been with Stanford for 28 years, from the Department of Urology to Medicine and Pediatrics in the School of Medicine. When she is off from work, she loves to watch various concerts around the Bay Area.  She loves dogs and will stop, pet or sometimes talk to dogs that walk around campus.

Hanqiu Li

Hanqiu received her B.A. from the University of Rochester in 2021 with an honor degree in Psychology. Her research interests focus on emotion regulation and the role of emotions (particularly loneliness) in social interactions. She is also interested in the fields of psychophysiology, sleep, self-compassion, and color psychology. She has worked with the lab as a volunteer research assistant at SPL since Summer 2020 and is the current Lab Manager of SPL. She loves cats but she is allergic to cat fur.

Olivia Magana

Olivia is funded by the NIDRC to work as a full-time research assistant for the Stanford Home Sleep Study. She received her BA in psychology from California State University, East Bay in 2020. Her latest areas of research interest involve anxiety, depression, and chronic diseases (specifically ones without current cures). She intends to attend graduate school in Fall 2023 to acquire a Ph.D. in clinical psychology. A fun fact about her is that she has a snow globe collection from places she has visited!

Sylvia Kreibig

Sylvia Kreibig, Ph.D., is a Senior Research Scientist at the Department of Psychology at Stanford University. She earned her Ph.D. in Psychology with a focus on Affective Sciences from the University of Geneva, Switzerland under the direction of Drs. Klaus Scherer and Guido Gendolla and completed her postdoctoral training at Stanford University under the mentorship of Dr. James Gross. The overarching aim of her research is to better understand how emotions impact mental and physical health and how emotion regulation can be used to improve our health. Core facets of her research address the role of appraisals in generating and differentiating emotions and the use of cognitive reappraisal for regulating emotions. Sylvia uses psychophysiological and neuroimaging methods in her research. Sylvia has most recently become interested in exploring the role of emotion dysregulation (during wake time) in disorders expressed during sleep.

Postdoctoral Fellows

Anat Talmon

Anat Talmon is a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Psychology at Stanford University. She finished her Ph.D. in Social Work from Tel Aviv University under the supervision of Prof. Karni Ginzburg. Her research focuses on the long-term implications of childhood maltreatment on both adult survivors’ body and mind. Specifically, she studies self-objectification and disrupted body identity among survivors of childhood maltreatment, and its detrimental effects on the survivors’ adjustment in general, and during specific phases of the life cycle, such as the transition to motherhood and aging. She received postdoctoral fellowships from the Haruv Institute and from the Israel Science Foundation (ISF) aimed to examine sleep disorders in the shadow of childhood maltreatment.

Dana Vertsberger

Dana Vertsberger is a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Psychology at Stanford University. Dana received her doctoral degree in Psychology from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Her research focuses on parents and the parent-child relationship. Specifically, she is currently interested in studying parents’ motivation to regulate their emotions and their emotion regulation strategies when experiencing negative emotions invoked by their children. To approach these questions she uses various methods, including experience-sampling methods and EEG.

Dena Bahmani

Dena Sadeghi-Bahmani, Ph.D., is a Postdoctoral Fellow under the mentorship of Prof. James Gross at the Department of Psychology at Stanford University. Dena is further a clinical psychologist and earned her Ph.D. from the University of Basel in Switzerland. The main focus of her Ph.D. dissertation was on psychological functioning, sleep disturbances and physical activity in multiple sclerosis. In addition, she completed a Postdoctoral Fellowship on exercise neuroscience. Dena’s current research focuses on emotion regulation and physical activity interventions on psychological functioning, social cognition, emotions and symptom management in multiple sclerosis. She designs online interventions and uses objective assessments such as sleep EEGs in her studies. In parallel with her main research line, Dena is interested in exploring social cognition and emotions in other neurological disorders. 

Johan Bjureberg

Johan Bjureberg is a postdoctoral fellow at the Department of Psychology at Stanford University. He earned his MSc in clinical psychology from the Department of Psychology, Uppsala University and his PhD from the Department of Psychology, Karolinska Institutet, Sweden. Johan studies maladaptive behaviors, such as self-injury, road rage, and aggression, theorized – at least in part – to arise from emotion-regulation difficulties. He studies these behaviors and their proposed underlying mechanisms from a psychotherapeutic, psychometric, behavioral, and epidemiological perspective.

Matt Dixon

Matt is a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Psychology at Stanford University. He received his Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of British Columbia. The overarching aim of his research is to understand the psychological and biological basis of motivation, decision-making, and emotion regulation strategy use in healthy and clinical populations. To this end, his research relies on theoretical models, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), behavioral tasks, and self-report data. A particular interest is how different facets of the mind can be modeled as a network of interacting components, and how this may be instantiated in large-scale brain networks including the default mode network, frontoparietal control network, and salience network. 

Pardis Miri

Pardis Miri,  PhD, recently received her doctorate in the area of human computer interaction from University of  California Santa Cruz. As a PhD student, she spent the last 3 years of her training at Stanford University under the supervision of Dr. Marzullo, Dr. Gross, and Dr. Isbister. For her dissertation, she took a multidisciplinary approach in using technology for affect regulation. More specifically, she explored the placement and pattern, and personalization of a vibrotactile breathing pacer system that she developed during her graduate studies. Her work was funded by the National Science Foundation and Intel labs. Prior to being a Ph.D. student, Miri earned her Master’s degree in computer science from the University of California San Diego in the area of Systems and Networking. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford University conducting research in using vibrotactile technology to aid affect regulation in neurotypical and neurodiverse populations.

Pilleriin Sikka

Pilleriin Sikka is a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Psychology at Stanford University. She holds a PhD degree in psychology (University of Turku, Finland), MSc degree in neuroscience (University of Oxford, UK), as well as MSc and BSc degrees in psychology (University of Tallinn, Estonia). Pilleriin is interested in the nature and continuity of emotions and emotion regulation across the wake-sleep cycle and how these are related to health and well-being. She also strives to understand the psychology and neurobiology of peace of mind. In her research Pilleriin uses a multidisciplinary and multilevel framework that draws on the concepts, theories, and methods from the fields of philosophy, psychology, (affective) neuroscience, and (molecular) biology, and integrates different research areas, such as emotion research, sleep and dream research, consciousness research, and well-being research.

Robin Wollast

Dr. Wollast is a postdoctoral researcher in psychology at the Stanford Psychophysiology Laboratory. He earned his PhD from Université libre de Bruxelles in Belgium. He has published numerous first-authored scientific articles in leading international journals and collaborated with highly regarded experts from America, Europe, and Asia. Dr. Wollast won the prestigious Belgian American Educational Foundation Award to conduct research on emotion and emotion regulation at Stanford University. His primary research focuses on body image, self-compassion, and mindfulness through various lenses, including culture, gender, and mental health. Besides this main focus, Dr. Wollast studies dropout and perseverance in doctoral studies, and he is involved in several studies on collective action, group polarization, and ideological extremism. Currently, he is leading many projects related to the COVID-19 pandemic, including large-scale studies conducted in more than 100 countries and translated into 30 languages.

Graduate Students


Ashish Mehta

Ashish is second-year graduate student in the Psychology department. Ashish is curious about how emotion awareness related abilities impact appraisal and reappraisal. He is also interested in how technology can be used to deliver emotion regulation training to the masses and what factors predict the success or failure of these methods. Other interests include machine learning and statistics, piano, and amassing a jungle of houseplants.

Jinxiao Zhang

Jinxiao is a graduate student in the Psychology Department. His research interest generally lies in how the "emotion system" and the "cognition system" interplay with each other. Specifically, he is interested in how cognitive control can modulate emotion processes as well as how emotion can affect cognitive processes. He is also interested in how the emotion-cognition interaction relates to psychological health. He uses neuroimaging, physiological, eye-tracking, and behavioral methods to investigate these research questions. In his recent work, he studies how sleep influences emotion regulation and other emotional processes. He is a big fan of interdisciplinary research (psychological, biochemical, and computational) and open science practice.

Kate Petrova

Kate’s research encompasses two broad domains: basic questions about the nature of emotion as well as applied research at the intersection of affective science and social psychology. Her current interests include how different ways of paying attention to and labeling affective experiences shape emotion regulation. She is also curious about how people regulate their own and others’ emotions in naturalistic social interactions. Kate’s other interests include empathic processes in virtual communication, lay theories of emotion, and the development of emotion regulation across the lifespan. Outside of the lab, Kate enjoys running, exploring local restaurants, and learning about aviation and spaceflight. Kate earned her A.B. in Psychology from Bryn Mawr College and spent several years working on the Harvard Study of Adult Development before joining SPL.

Maia ten Brink

Maia ten Brink is a fifth year Psychology graduate student in the Affective Science area mentored by James Gross and Rachel Manber. She uses polysomnography, actigraphy, EEG, psychophysiology, ecological momentary assessments, natural language processing, virtual reality, and self-report methods to study how sleep interacts with emotions and beliefs in adults and adolescents. She is interested in the temporal dynamics of sleep and mood; beliefs and mindsets surrounding sleep; subjective experiences of sleep and fatigue; the moderating role of affect regulation in sleep; brain and physiological mechanisms impacting overnight changes in affect; and the neural processes underlying sleep symptoms across multiple forms of psychopathology. Send an email to hear more about her research or if you are interested in collaboration or in getting involved in sleep and emotion research as part of her team.

Friends and Visitors

  • Ahmet Uysal
  • Amanda Morrison 
  • Andero Uusberg
  • Atina Manvelian
  • Dustin Goerlitz
  • Eran Magen
  • Gadi Gilam
  • Golijeh Golarai
  • Gregory Bratman
  • Guarav Suri
  • Helen Uusberg
  • Hooria Jazaieri
  • Jenna JunHa Lim
  • Juan Ramos-Cejudo
  • Katya Fernandez
  • Marily Oppezzo
  • Philippe Goldin
  • Yael Enav