Our Students in Action

Ia Ko

Happiness, Flow, and Job Performance


The research of Ia Ko focuses on people’s optimal experiences at work and their relations to the work. Specifically, Ia is interested in flow, job crafting, engagement, meaning, and happiness in the workplace.

Ia is currently conducting a study on the pursuit of happiness in the workplace. The goal of this research is to discover what strategies people use to maintain or increase the level of their happiness at work and whether those strategies depend on the people’s relations to the work or their orientations to happiness.

As a research assistant to Dr. Jeanne Nakamura and Dr. Mihalyi Csikszentmihalyi, Ia is involved with the study of sources of good mentoring. In another ongoing work with Dr. Stewart Donaldson, Ia has been reviewing positive organizational psychology literature to obtain a detailed picture of the current state of the field and discover the trends in the literature.

Ia just finished her two years of internship at Southern California Edison where she designed, developed, and evaluated training programs. In her leisure time, Ia paints and plays the piano and violin.