Home » Winter 2012 » Welcome Justin R. Garcia

Welcome Justin R. Garcia

The Kinsey Institute is pleased to welcome our newest postgraduate fellow, Justin R. Garcia, Ph.D.

Dr. Garcia holds a postdoctoral fellowship in "Common Themes in Reproductive Diversity," (CTRD), an interdisciplinary research training program at Indiana University. Research conducted by CTRD Fellows address key questions in the development and expression of sex differences and sexual patterns, as well as maternal and paternal effects on morphological, sexual, and social development.

Justin Garcia is a 2011 graduate of Binghamton University (SUNY) in Biological Sciences, with a Masters in Biomedical Anthropology and Phd in Evolutionary Biology. His dissertation is titled "Behaviorial Ecology of Contemporary Human Sexual Behavior."

His current research interests include evolutionary and biocultural models of human behavior, romantic love and intimate relationships, sexual/social monogamy, and uncommitted sex and hook-up culture in emerging adulthood.

Justin's research projects include:

-- Working on a book project with Peter B. Gray at University of Nevada in contract with Harvard University Press on evolution and human sexual behavior.

-- Conducting more research into 'hook-up' culture which is non-relational sex or uncommitted sexual encounters, happening especially during the developmental period of emerging adulthood (typical college age students). Justin is interested in understanding the motivations for this behavior. How do emerging young adults reconcile a desire for romantic relationships while living in a hook-up culture?

-- Exploring the evolutionary and biological foundations of monogamy and infidelity. Research in this area was the focus of Dr. Garcia's 2010 paper on the DRD4 gene which gained national and international media attention and opened up interesting popular discussions about how biology influences behavior. Media interest in infidelity research lead to a "cheating" gene misnomer that Dr. Garcia works to correct with his research - he reminds us we should not overgeneralize the influence of biology and stick to the data.

Since 2010, Dr. Garcia has served as Scientific Advisor/Consultant for the international online dating site Match.com. In particular, he has been a consultant for the annual SIA (Singles in America) study which is the most comprehensive ongoing study of single Americans which Match.com sponsors, but which is based on a randomly-selected, representative sample, including respondents from beyond Match.com. In 2011, the study had 5200 respondents, and the next study will be released in early 2012.

Working in such topical and accessible research areas, Dr. Garcia has been repeatedly approached for commentary on dating and monogamy/infidelity issues, and has made media appearances on CNN, MSNBC, CBS, and CTV.


Selected Publications

Maryanne L. Fisher, Justin R. Garcia, and Rose Sokol Chang (Editors). (In preparation). Evolutionís Empress: Darwinian Perspectives on the Nature of Women. Oxford University Press, New York.

JR Garcia, G Geher, B Crosier, G Saad, D Gambacorta, L Johnsen & E Pranckitas. (2011). The interdisciplinary context of evolutionary approaches to human behavior: a key to survival in the ivory archipelago. Futures, 43, 749-761.

JR Garcia, J MacKillop, EL Aller, AM Merriwether, DS Wilson & JK Lum. (2010). Associations between dopamine D4 receptor gene variation with both infidelity and sexual promiscuity. PLoS ONE, 5, e14162.

 

 


« Return to Winter 2012 Contents NEXT: Dr. Virginia J. Vitzthum Elected AAAS Fellow »