Pedro De Abreu

🇺🇸  Cambridge

Pedro De Abreu is a Research Fellow and Service to Society Fellow at Harvard University. Pedro’s research revolves around identity, beliefs, and group difference, particularly in the context of race, stigma, inter and intra-group relations. He is interested in how those areas interact with each other and the research questions that come from such interactions. For example, what is the relationship between mindset inclinations and instances of successful rehabilitation in the juvenile detention system? What parts of our identity do we unknowingly conceal and express as a function of our social standing? To what extent does the internalization of incremental theories of intelligence help decelerate collective as well as individual transgressive behavior?

In a Lewinian fashion, in addition to building theory, Pedro is interested in theory-based interventions that can help alleviate pressing societal issues. He wants to better understand the role that social identity, beliefs, and intergroup relations play in diverse institutional contexts. The populations most dear to his heart are children and adolescents in the school system and in the juvenile detention system––the latter, the population that cultural sociologist Orlando Patterson calls “the disconnected”—youth who are out of school and unemployed—who are often excluded from procedural, evaluative, and declarative social networks of mobility, and subpopulations in organizations who are stigmatized in terms of deviation of personal and tribalized traits like race and ethnicity. The theoretical basis of his research comes primarily from social and developmental psychology and from organizational behavior.

Pedro also co-teaches at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, serves as a Philanthropy Advisory Fellow at Harvard’s Effective Altruism, and facilitates senior thesis workshops for Mind, Brain, Behavior Harvard College seniors. Pedro has been appointed South Carolina’s New Century Scholar by USA Today and the Coca-Cola Foundation, is a winner of the Harvard Leadership in Education Award; he is also a TEDMED delegate, a Magellan Scholar, Walker Institute Scholar, City of Columbia Fellow, Darla Moore Emerging Leader, and the youngest ever-appointed member of the Board of Directors of the Central Midlands Council of Governments. Pedro lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.