Mika Armenta

R&D S&E, Systems Research and Analysis

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R&D S&E, Systems Research and Analysis


Sandia National Laboratories, New Mexico
P.O. Box 5800
Albuquerque, NM 87185-0639


Mika has a background in experimental and social psychology, and is currently a member of technical staff in the Applied Cognitive Science department. She integrates theory and methods from the evolutionary and social sciences to inform work in human decision-making. At Sandia, this ranges from human subjects’ research with the experimental wargaming group, to intervention design, monitoring, and evaluation.

Specifically, she has experience and technical training in experimental design, social psychology, participant/community-informed research and methods, intervention/program evaluation, and cross-cultural and online research and program evaluation and monitoring.

Her work interests lie in global security, conflict reduction and prevention, and peace and wellbeing enhancement. Her research interests and background focus on how socially motivated emotions and behaviors influence the decisions and interactions of individuals and groups.


M.A. Psychology (Integrative Neuroscience)  

  • University of Chicago, 2019                
  • Thesis: Effects of a Norm for Forgiveness on Cooperation, Forgiveness, and Intergroup Bias

B.A. Psychology and International Studies

  • University of New Mexico, 2015
  • Summa Cum Laude
  • Peace and Justice Certificate

Certificate, Islamic Culture                             

  • Université Moulay Ismail, Meknés, Morocco, 2011


Select Science Communication

  • Editor, Journal of Human Performance in Extreme Environments,  Special Issue, 2018       

Select Peer-Reviewed Publications

  • Armenta, M. et al. (In preparation). The effects of chronic violence on moral development in children: a short review.
  • Armenta, M. Lakkaraju, K., Trumbo, M.C.S, Kittinger, R., Murphy, A., Sandy, C., Harrison, T. (In preparation). I Turn to You: How Culture and Strength of Integration with a Group Affect Help-Seeking in an Online, Time Constrained Task. Sandia National Laboratories and Defense Science and Technology Laboratory.
  • Letchford, J.O., Epifanovskaya, L., Lakkaraju, K., Armenta, M., et al.,(2022).Experimental wargaming with SIGNAL. Military Operations Research Society. 27 (2).
  • Armenta, M., Epifanovskaya, Laura, Letchford, Josh, Lakkaraju, Kiran; Whetzel, J., Goldblum, B., Tibbetts, J. (2020). SIGNAL Game Manual Version 1.0
  • Hayden, N.K., Craft, R., Armenta, M., et al. (2019). Peace Engineering and Sandia: A Concept Paper. Sandia National Laboratories.