Title/Department: PhD student, Consumer Behavior and Family Economics
Office Address: 4176 Nancy Nicholas Hall
Office Hours: Thursday 3 – 4 PM
Somalis’ research interest is in the dynamic of families’ financial and economic decision-making processes, and related issues such as the financial and socio-psychological distress of the “Sandwich Generation.” Her goal is to improve individual and family well-being through evidence-based policies in the workplace and/or local government.
Somalis is currently interested in studies of adult children and dependent aging parents in developing countries and on the impact of caregiving stress on family caregivers’ employment and health. She believes that in studying problems in aging populations, researchers should consider both the cultural and economic development aspects, since a person’s socio-psychological and economic perspectives are heavily influenced not only by individual factors but also by family and society, and the accessibility of resources therein.
Education and Relevant Experience
Somalis graduated with a BA in Economics from Pannasastra University of Cambodia. She was a recipient of the Erasmus Mundus scholarship and earned a joint master’s degree in Economics of Globalization and European Integration from the University of Lille, France; University of Antwerp, Belgium; and University of Economics, Prague, Czech Republic.
Her personal and academic background has exposed her to the cultures, traditions, and socioeconomic differences of her associates. The opportunities to connect with individuals of differing cultures and socioeconomic statuses allowed her glimpses of the differences in family and individual decision-making processes across persons of the same culture or country, ultimately driving her to pursue the field of consumer science and family economics. This experience showed her how individuals’ relationships with their families may have shaped their perspectives about the market and the subsequent economic and financial decision-making.