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Erin K. Willer

Erin K.   Willer

  • 303 871-4308


BS, Illinois State University
MS, Illinois State University
PhD, University of Nebraska, Lincoln


Dr. Willer’s overarching program of research focuses on the communicative management of identity and relational difficulty. As such, she studies such management vis-à-vis social aggression, as well as issues related to reproductive challenges, including infertility and perinatal loss. Dr. Willer also investigates types of communicative management strategies, such as storylistening and perspective-taking, that relational partners employ when they are experiencing distress. Her work is grounded in narrative theorizing, takes an intergroup approach, and makes use of a dark- and bright-side lens. An ultimate goal of this work is to shed light how people can manage difficulty in a manner that is predictive of individual and relational health, as well as acceptance and understanding of outgroup members. She has received national and regional awards and her work has been published in journals including, Communication Studies, Journal of Family Communication, Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, Personal Relationships, and Qualitative Communication Research.