Psychology researcher named AAAS Fellow

Author: Imran Ghori
May 20, 2024

UC Riverside psychology researcher Sonja Lyubomirsky has been named a 2023 fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, or AAAS.

As part of the organization’s 150th anniversary class, she joins one of the world’s largest general scientific societies. Election as a fellow honors members “whose efforts on behalf of the advancement of science or its applications in service to society have distinguished them among their peers and colleagues,” according to the AAAS website.

Sonja Lyubomirsky

Lyubomirsky, a distinguished professor of psychology who has been at UCR since 1994, is a leading expert in the study of happiness and social connection. She has studied how increasing positive interventions like practicing kindness and gratitude can increase happiness. Her recent work explores how to boost social connections with deep in-person conversations, listening, and psychoactive substances.

Her books include the bestselling “The How of Happiness: A Scientific Approach to Getting the Life You Want” and “The Myths of Happiness: What Should Make You Happy, But Doesn’t, What Shouldn’t Make You Happy, But Does.” 

“The news of becoming an AAAS fellow came as a total shock—indeed, I thought the email was requesting me to update my credit card —but I was so happy to hear it (no pun intended),” Lyubomirsky said.

She joins a class of 502 scientists, engineers, and innovators across 24 fields named as 2023 fellows, and is one of 37 from the University of California.

The new fellows will receive a certificate and a gold and blue rosette pin (representing science and engineering, respectively) to commemorate their election and will be celebrated at a forum on Sept. 21.

AAAS was founded in 1780 and elected fellows annually since 1874. Fellows have included Thomas Edison, W.E.B DuBois, Maria Mitchell, Steven Chu, Ellen Ochoa and Irwin M. Jacobs.