James J. Li

Credentials: (he/him)

Position title: A. A. Alexander Associate Professor of Psychology and Psychiatry, Director of Clinical Training

Email: james.li@wisc.edu

Website: Social and Behavioral Development Lab

Phone: (608) 265-1091

321 Psychology

Research Area(s)

Lab Website
Lab Website URL: https://lilab.waisman.wisc.edu/

Prospective PhD Students
I WILL be accepting PhD students in Clinical Psychology for admission in Fall 2024. For more information, please visit this dedicated section on my lab webpage (i.e., lab FAQs,  questions about fit, necessary skills and prior research experience, etc.) as well the Psychology Department’s dedicated section on admissions.

Research Interests
I am a clinical psychological scientist with expertise in developmental psychopathology, quantitative methods (i.e., longitudinal models, factor analysis, structural equational modeling), and statistical genetics (i.e., GWAS, polygenic scores). I received my B.A. in Psychological and Brain Sciences from Johns Hopkins University and my Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from UCLA (minor in Quantitative Psychology). I completed an APA-accredited clinical internship at the Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinics at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and a two-year NIH T32 postdoctoral fellowship in Psychiatric and Statistical Genetics at the Virginia Institute for Psychiatric and Behavioral Genetics (VIPBG).

My research bridges clinical and diversity science, quantitative psychology, genomicsneuroscience, and developmental psychopathology to study the causes of neurodevelopmental and externalizing conditions, features, and behaviors, including ADHD, autism, conduct, and substance use. My lab’s mission is to better understand how diversity interacts with biology and psychosocial environments to develop more effective and personalized mental health care, particularly for children with mental health conditions. Having an extensive network of collaborators enables the students in my lab to utilize multiple of scientific approaches – genomics, neuroimaging, machine learning, clinical – to study neurodevelopment and externalizing outcomes across diverse populations. We are affiliated with the Waisman Center, the Center for Demography of Health and Aging’s Initiative in Social Genomics, and the Hierarchical Taxonomy of Psychopathology (HiTOP) international consortium.

At this time, research in my lab is focused on the following scientific issues:

  • Racial and ethnic differences underlying multidimensional mental health outcomes (HiTOP), including but not limited to studies of measurement invariance, social determinants of health, longitudinal outcomes, etc.
  • Gene, brain, environmental, and cognitive and behavioral factors underlying the development of complex neurodevelopmental conditions, including autism and ADHD, from a neurodiversity perspective
  • Gene-environment interactions underlying the development of neurodevelopmental and externalizing outcomes across the lifespan
  • Identifying biomarkers in the prediction of neurodevelopmental and externalizing outcomes across the lifespan

Representative Publications
Please visit https://lilab.waisman.wisc.edu/publications/ for access to all of the articles from our lab.