The Marshmallow Test

Mastering Self-Control


By Walter Mischel

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Renowned psychologist Walter Mischel, designer of the famous Marshmallow Test, explains what self-control is and how to master it.

A child is presented with a marshmallow and given a choice: Eat this one now, or wait and enjoy two later. What will she do? And what are the implications for her behavior later in life?

The world’s leading expert on self-control, Walter Mischel has proven that the ability to delay gratification is critical for a successful life, predicting higher SAT scores, better social and cognitive functioning, a healthier lifestyle and a greater sense of self-worth. But is willpower prewired, or can it be taught?

In The Marshmallow Test, Mischel explains how self-control can be mastered and applied to challenges in everyday life — from weight control to quitting smoking, overcoming heartbreak, making major decisions, and planning for retirement. With profound implications for the choices we make in parenting, education, public policy and self-care, The Marshmallow Test will change the way you think about who we are and what we can be.


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AS BOTH MY STUDENTS and my children can testify, self-control does not come naturally to me. I have been known to call my students in the middle of the night to ask how the latest data analysis was going, though it began only that evening. At dinners with friends, to my embarrassment my plate is often the first to be clean, when others are far from done. My own impatience, and the discovery that self-control strategies can be learned, has kept me studying those strategies for a lifetime.

The basic idea that drove my work and motivated me to write this book was my belief, and the findings, that the ability to delay immediate gratification for the sake of future consequences is an acquirable cognitive skill. In studies initiated half a century ago, and still ongoing today, we've shown that this skill set is visible and measurable early in life and has profound long-term consequences for people's welfare and mental and physical health over the life span. Most important, and exciting for its educational and child-rearing implications, it is a skill open to modification, and it can be enhanced through specific cognitive strategies that have now been identified.

The Marshmallow Test and the experiments that have followed over the last fifty years have helped stimulate a remarkable wave of research on self-control, with a fivefold increase in the number of scientific publications just within the first decade of this century. In this book I tell the story of this research, how it is illuminating the mechanisms that enable self-control, and how these mechanisms can be harnessed constructively in everyday life.

It began in the 1960s with preschoolers at Stanford University's Bing Nursery School, in a simple study that challenged them with a tough dilemma. My students and I gave the children a choice between one reward (for example, a marshmallow) that they could have immediately, and a larger reward (two marshmallows) for which they would have to wait, alone, for up to 20 minutes. We let the children select the rewards they wanted most from an assortment that included marshmallows, cookies, little pretzels, mints, and so on. "Amy," for example, chose marshmallows. She sat alone at a table facing the one marshmallow that she could have immediately, as well as the two marshmallows that she could have if she waited. Next to the treats was a desk bell she could ring at any time to call back the researcher and eat the one marshmallow. Or she could wait for the researcher to return, and if Amy hadn't left her chair or started to eat the marshmallow, she could have both. The struggles we observed as these children tried to restrain themselves from ringing the bell could bring tears to your eyes, have you applauding their creativeness and cheering them on, and give you fresh hope for the potential of even young children to resist temptation and persevere for their delayed rewards.

What the preschoolers did as they tried to keep waiting, and how they did or didn't manage to delay gratification, unexpectedly turned out to predict much about their future lives. The more seconds they waited at age four or five, the higher their SAT scores and the better their rated social and cognitive functioning in adolescence. At age 27–32, those who had waited longer during the Marshmallow Test in preschool had a lower body mass index and a better sense of self-worth, pursued their goals more effectively, and coped more adaptively with frustration and stress. At midlife, those who could consistently wait ("high delay"), versus those who couldn't ("low delay"), were characterized by distinctively different brain scans in areas linked to addictions and obesity.

What does the Marshmallow Test really show? Is the ability to delay gratification prewired? How can it be taught? What is its downside? This book speaks to these questions, and the answers are often surprising. In The Marshmallow Test, I discuss what "willpower" is and what it is not, the conditions that undo it, the cognitive skills and motivations that enable it, and the consequences of having it and using it. I examine the implications of these findings for rethinking who we are; what we can be; how our minds work; how we can—and can't—control our impulses, emotions, and dispositions; how we can change; and how we can raise and educate our children.

Everybody is eager to know how willpower works, and everybody would like to have more of it, and with less effort, for themselves, their children, and their relatives puffing on cigarettes. The ability to delay gratification and resist temptations has been a fundamental challenge since the dawn of civilization. It is central to the Genesis story of Adam and Eve's temptation in the Garden of Eden, and a subject of the ancient Greek philosophers, who named the weakness of the will akrasia. Over the millennia, willpower was considered an immutable trait—you either had it or you didn't—making those low in willpower victims of their biological and social histories and the forces of the momentary situation. Self-control is crucial for the successful pursuit of long-term goals. It is equally essential for developing the self-restraint and empathy needed to build caring and mutually supportive relationships. It can help people avoid becoming entrapped early in life, dropping out of school, becoming impervious to consequences, or getting stuck in jobs they hate. It is the "master aptitude" underlying emotional intelligence, essential for constructing a fulfilling life. And yet, despite its evident importance, it was excluded from serious scientific study until my students and I demystified the concept, created a method to study it, showed its critical role for adaptive functioning, and parsed the psychological processes that enable it.

Public attention to the Marshmallow Test increased early in this century and keeps escalating. In 2006, David Brooks devoted an editorial to it in the Sunday New York Times, and years later in an interview he conducted with President Obama, the president asked Brooks if he wanted to talk about marshmallows. The test was featured in The New Yorker in a 2009 Department of Science article, and the research is widely presented in television programs, magazines, and newspapers throughout the world. It is even guiding the efforts of Sesame Street's Cookie Monster to master his impulse to voraciously devour cookies so that he may join the Cookie Connoisseurs Club. The marshmallow research is influencing the curriculum in many schools that teach a wide range of children, from those living in poverty to those attending elite private academies. International investment companies use it to encourage retirement planning. And a picture of a marshmallow has become an immediately understood opener to launch discussions of delay of gratification with almost any audience. In New York City, I see kids coming home from school wearing T-shirts that say Don't Eat the Marshmallows and large metal buttons declaring I Passed the Marshmallow Test. Fortunately, as the public interest in the topic of willpower increases, so does the amount and depth of scientific information on how delay of gratification and self-control are enabled, both psychologically and biologically.

In order to understand self-control and the ability to delay gratification, we need to grasp not only what enables it but also what undoes it. As in the parable of Adam and Eve, we see headline after headline that reveals the latest celebrity—a president, a governor, another governor, a revered judge and moral pillar of society, an international financial and political wizard, a sports hero, a film star—who blew it with a young intern, a housekeeper, or an illegal drug. These people are smart, and not just in their IQ intelligence but emotional and social intelligence as well—otherwise they could not have achieved their eminence. Then why do they act so stupid? And why do they have so much company in the many men and women who never make it into the headlines?

I draw on findings at the vanguard of science to try to make sense of this. At the heart of the story are two closely interacting systems within the human brain, one "hot"—emotional, reflexive, unconscious—and the other "cool"—cognitive, reflective, slower, and effortful. The ways in which these two systems interact in the face of strong temptations underlie how preschoolers deal with marshmallows and how willpower works, or doesn't. What I learned changed my long-held assumptions about who we are, the nature and expressions of character, and the possibilities for self-generated change.

Part I, Delay Ability: Enabling Self-Control, tells the story of the Marshmallow Test and the experiments that showed preschool children doing what Adam and Eve could not do in the Garden of Eden. The results identified the mental processes and strategies through which we can cool hot temptations, delay gratification, and achieve self-control. They also pointed to possible brain mechanisms that enable these achievements. Decades later, a flood of brain research is using cutting-edge imaging techniques to probe the mind-brain connections and help us understand what the preschooler managed to do.

The marshmallow findings inevitably lead to the question "Is self-control prewired?" Recent discoveries in the science of genetics are providing fresh answers to that question. They are revealing the surprising plasticity of our brains and transforming how we think about the role of nurture and DNA, environment and heredity, and the malleability of human nature. The implications go far beyond the science lab and contradict widely shared beliefs about who we are.

Part I leaves us with a mystery: why does the preschooler's ability to wait for more treats, rather than ring the bell and settle for less, predict so much about future success and well-being? I answer that question in Part II, From Marshmallows in Pre-K to Money in 401(k), where I look at how self-control ability influences the journey from preschool to retirement planning, how it paves the way to creating successful experiences and positive expectations—an "I think I can!" mind-set and a sense of self-worth. While not guaranteeing success and a rosy future, self-control ability greatly improves the chances, helping us make the tough choices and sustain the effort needed to reach our goals. How well it works depends not just on skills but on internalizing goals and values that direct the journey, and on motivation that is strong enough to overcome the setbacks along the route. How self-control can be harnessed to build such a life by making willpower less effortful and increasingly automatic and rewarding is the story of Part II, and like life itself it unfolds in unexpected ways. I discuss not just resistance to temptation but diverse other self-control challenges, from cooling painful emotions, overcoming heartbreak, and avoiding depression to making important decisions that take future consequences into account. And while Part II shows the benefits of self-control, it makes its limits equally clear: a life with too much of it can be as unfulfilling as one with too little.

In Part III, From Lab to Life, I look at the implications of the research for public policy, focusing on how recent educational interventions beginning in preschool are incorporating lessons on self-control in order to give those children living under conditions of toxic stress a chance to build better lives. I then summarize the concepts and strategies examined throughout this book that can help with everyday self-control struggles. The final chapter considers how findings about self-control, genetics, and brain plasticity change the conception of human nature, and the understanding of who we are and what we can be.

In writing The Marshmallow Test, I imagined myself having a leisurely conversation with you, the reader, much like the many I have had with friends and new acquaintances, sparked by the question "What's the latest in the marshmallow work?" Soon we veer off into how the findings relate to aspects of our own lives, from child rearing, hiring new staff, and avoiding unwise business and personal decisions to overcoming heartbreak, quitting smoking, controlling weight, reforming education, and understanding our own vulnerabilities and strengths. I have written the book for those of you who, like me, have struggled with self-control. I've also written it for those who simply would like to understand more deeply how our minds work. I hope The Marshmallow Test will start some new conversations for you.



Enabling Self-Control

PART I BEGINS IN the 1960s in what my students and I called "the Surprise Room" at Stanford University's Bing Nursery School, where we developed the method that became the Marshmallow Test. We started with experiments to observe when and how preschoolers became able to exert sufficient self-restraint to wait for two marshmallows they eagerly wanted rather than settle for just one right away. The longer we looked through the one-way observation window, the more we were astonished by what we saw as the children tried to control themselves and wait. Simple suggestions to think about the treats in different ways made it either impossibly difficult or remarkably easy for them to resist the temptation. Under some conditions they could keep on waiting; under others they rang the bell moments after the researcher left the room. We continued our studies to identify those conditions, to see what the children were thinking and doing that allowed them to control themselves, to try to figure out just how they made their struggles with self-control easier—or bound to fail.

It took many years, but gradually a model emerged of how the mind and brain work when preschoolers and adults struggle to resist temptations and manage to succeed. How self-control can be achieved—not by toughing it out or just saying "No!" but by changing how we think—is the story of Part I. Beginning early in life, some people are better than others at self-control, but almost everybody can find ways to make it easier. Part I shows how that can be done.

We also found that the roots of self-control are already visible in the toddler's behavior. So is self-control all prewired? Part I ends by answering that question in light of recent findings in genetics that profoundly change earlier views of the nature versus nurture puzzle. This new understanding has serious implications for how we raise and educate our children and how we think about them and ourselves, and I turn to this in subsequent chapters.



AT THE FAMOUS PARIS medical school named in honor of René Descartes, students crowd the street in front of its impressive pillared entry, chain-smoking cigarettes whose packets announce in French in large capital letters SMOKING KILLS. The messes that result when people cannot inhibit immediate gratification for the sake of delayed outcomes, even when they know they should, are familiar. We see them in our children and in ourselves. We see willpower's failure whenever earnest New Year's resolutions—to quit smoking, to go to the gym regularly, to stop quarreling with the person you love most—dissolve before January ends. I once had the pleasure of participating with Thomas Schelling, a Nobel laureate in economics, in a seminar on self-control. He wrote this summary of the dilemmas created by a weakness of will:

How should we conceptualize this rational consumer whom all of us know and who some of us are, who in self-disgust grinds his cigarettes down the disposal swearing that this time he means never again to risk orphaning his children with lung cancer and is on the street three hours later looking for a store that's still open to buy cigarettes; who eats a high-calorie lunch knowing that he will regret it, does regret it, cannot understand how he lost control, resolves to compensate with a low-calorie dinner, eats a high-calorie dinner knowing he will regret it, and does regret it; who sits glued to the TV knowing that again tomorrow he'll wake early in a cold sweat unprepared for that morning meeting on which so much of his career depends; who spoils the trip to Disneyland by losing his temper when his children do what he knew they were going to do when he resolved not to lose his temper when they did it?

Debates about the nature and existence of willpower notwithstanding, people go right on exercising it, struggling to climb up Mount Everest, enduring years of self-denial and strict training to get to the Olympics or star in the ballet, even kicking well-established drug addictions. Some adhere to stringent diets or give up tobacco after years of lighting the next cigarette from the one still in the mouth; others fail in spite of beginning with the same good intentions. And when we look closely at ourselves, how do we explain when and why our willpower and self-control efforts work or don't?

Before coming to Stanford as a psychology professor in 1962, I had done research on decision making in Trinidad and at Harvard, asking children to choose between less candy now or more later, or less money now versus more later. (I discuss this research in Chapter 6.) But our initial choice to delay and the ability to stick with it when faced with hot temptations easily go their separate ways. On entering a restaurant I can decide, indeed firmly resolve, "No dessert tonight! I won't do it because I have to avoid the cholesterol, the expanding waist, the next bad blood test…" Then the pastry cart rolls by and the waiter flashes the chocolate mousse in front of my eyes, and before there's time to reflect it winds up in my mouth. Given how often that happened to me, I became curious about what it takes to stick with the virtuous resolutions I kept abandoning. The Marshmallow Test became the tool for studying how people go from a choice to delay gratification to actually managing to wait and resist the temptation.


From the age of antiquity, to the Enlightenment, to Freud, to the present day, young children have been characterized as impulsive, helpless, unable to delay gratification, and seeking only immediate satisfaction. With those naive expectations, I was surprised as I watched each of my three closely spaced daughters, Judith, Rebecca, and Linda, change in their first few years of life. They quickly morphed from mostly gurgling or screaming, to learning in exquisite detail how to annoy one another and enchant their parents, to becoming people with whom one could have fascinating, thoughtful conversations. In just a few years they could even sit more or less still to wait for things they wanted, and I tried to make sense out of what was unfolding in front of me at the kitchen table. I realized that I didn't have a clue about what went on in their heads that enabled them to control themselves, at least some of the time, and to delay gratification in the face of temptations, even when no one was hovering over them.

I wanted to understand willpower, and specifically delay of gratification for the sake of future consequences—how people experience and exert it, or don't, in everyday life. To move beyond speculation, we needed a method to study this ability in children as they began to develop it. I could see the skill developing in my three daughters when they were preschoolers at the Bing Nursery School at Stanford. This preschool was the ideal laboratory, newly completed on the campus as an integrated early education and research facility, with large one-way glass observation windows onto the attractive play areas, and small attached research rooms in which behavior could also be unobtrusively observed from a monitoring booth. We used one of these rooms for our research and told the children this was "the Surprise Room." That's where we escorted them to play the "games" that became our experiments.

In the Surprise Room, my graduate students Ebbe Ebbesen, Bert Moore, and Antonette Zeiss and I, as well as many other students, spent months of fun and frustration crafting, pilot-testing, and fine-tuning the procedure. For example, would telling preschoolers how long the delay would be—say 5 minutes versus 15 minutes—influence how long they waited? We found that it did not matter since they were still too young to understand such time differences. Would the relative amount of the rewards matter? It did. But what kind of rewards? We needed to create an intense conflict between an emotionally hot temptation that the child was eager to have immediately and one that was twice as large but required him or her to delay gratification for at least a few minutes. The temptation had to be meaningful and powerful enough for young girls and boys; appropriate, yet easily and precisely measurable.

Fifty years ago most children probably loved marshmallows as much as they do now, but—at least at Stanford's Bing Nursery School—their parents sometimes forbade them unless a toothbrush was at hand. Absent a universal favorite, we offered a selection of treats from which the children could choose. Whatever they selected, we offered them a choice of getting one treat right away or two if they waited for the researcher to return "by herself." Our frustration working out the details peaked when a first grant application to support the research was turned down by a federal agency with the suggestion that we apply instead to a candy company. We feared they might be right.

My previous research in the Caribbean had shown the importance of trust as a factor in the willingness to delay gratification. To assure that the children trusted the person who made the promise, they first played with the researcher until they were comfortable. Then the child was seated at a small table that had a desk bell on it. To further increase trust, the researcher repeatedly stepped out of the room, the child rang the bell, and the researcher immediately jumped back in, exclaiming, "You see? You brought me back!" As soon as the child understood that the researcher would always return immediately when summoned, the self-control test, described as another "game," began.

Though we kept the method simple, we gave it an impossibly cumbersome academic name: "The preschool self-imposed delay of immediate gratification for the sake of delayed but more valued rewards paradigm." Fortunately, decades later, after the columnist David Brooks discovered the work and featured it in the New York Times under the title "Marshmallows and Public Policy," the media dubbed it "the Marshmallow Test." The name stuck, although we often did not use marshmallows as the treats.

When we designed the experiment in the 1960s we did not film the children. But twenty years later, to record the Marshmallow Test procedure and to illustrate the diverse strategies children use as they try to wait for their treats, my former postdoc Monica L. Rodriguez filmed five-to six-year-olds with a hidden camera in a public school in Chile. Monica followed the same procedure we had used in the original experiments. First up was "Inez," an adorable little first grader with a serious expression but a twinkle in her eye. Monica seated Inez at a small table in the school's barren research room. Inez had chosen Oreo cookies as her treats. On the table were a desk bell and a plastic tray the size of a dinner plate, with two cookies in one corner of the tray and one in the other corner. Both the immediate and the delayed rewards were left with the children, to increase their trust that the treats would materialize if they waited for them as well as to intensify their conflict. Nothing else was on the table, and no toys or interesting objects were available in the room to distract the children while they waited.

Inez was eager to get two cookies rather than just one when given the choice. She understood that Monica had to go out of the room to do some work but that she could call her back at any time by ringing the bell. Monica let Inez try ringing it a couple of times, to demonstrate that each time she rang Monica would immediately come back in the room. Monica then explained the contingency. If Inez waited for her to come back by herself, she got the two cookies. If she did not want to wait, she could ring the bell at any time. But if she rang the bell, or began to eat the treat, or left the chair, she'd get only the single cookie. To be sure that Inez understood the instructions fully, she was asked to repeat them.

When Monica exited, Inez suffered for an agonizing few moments with an increasingly sad face and visible discomfort until she seemed about to burst into tears. She then peeked down at the treats and stared hard at them for more than ten seconds, deep in thought. Suddenly her arm shot out toward the bell but just as her hand got to it, she stopped herself abruptly. Gingerly, tentatively, her index finger hovered above the bell's ringer, almost but not quite touching it, over and over, as if to tease herself. But then she jerked her head away from the tray and the bell, and burst out laughing, as if she had done something terribly funny, sticking her fist into her mouth to prevent herself from roaring aloud, her face beaming with a self-congratulatory smile. No audience has watched this video without oohing and laughing along with Inez in empathic delight. As soon as she stopped giggling, she repeated her teasing play with the bell, but now she alternately used her index finger to shush herself and stuck her hand in front of her carefully closed lips, whispering "No, no" as if to stop herself from doing what she had been about to do. After 20 minutes had passed, Monica returned "by herself," but instead of eating the treats right away, Inez marched off triumphantly with her two cookies in a bag because she wanted to take them home to show her mother what she had managed to do.

"Enrico," large for his age and dressed in a colorful T-shirt, with a handsome face topped by neatly cut blond bangs, waited patiently. He tipped his chair far back against the wall behind him, banging it nonstop, while staring up at the ceiling with a bored, resigned look, breathing hard, seemingly enjoying the loud crashing sounds he made. He kept banging until Monica returned, and he got his two cookies.

"Blanca" kept herself busy with a mimed silent conversation—like a Charlie Chaplin monologue—in which she seemed to be carefully instructing herself on what to do and what to avoid while waiting for her treats. She even mimed smelling the imagined goodies by pressing her empty hand against her nose.

"Javier," who had intense, penetrating eyes and an intelligent face, spent the waiting time completely absorbed in what appeared to be a cautious science experiment. Maintaining an expression of total concentration, he seemed to be testing how slowly he could manage to raise and move the bell without ringing it. He elevated it high above his head and, squinting at it intently, transported the bell as far away from himself as possible on the desktop, stretching the journey to make it as long and slow as he could. It was an awesome feat of psychomotor control and imagination from what looked like a budding scientist.


  • "The discoveries that grew out of the marshmallow studies add up to one of the most insightful research stories in the history of psychology. Whatever it is now, your view of human nature will change profoundly as you read this brilliant book."—Daniel Kahneman, author of Thinking Fast and Slow

  • "A fascinating book. It is such an addictive treat that I had no self-control in reading it, until I understood that I could actually improve my self-control, and from then on I was in marshmallow heaven. Stimulating, fun, clear, lively, and drawn from rigorous studies. It's not only accessible, but very convincing. Seriously, I love it."—Alan Alda, actor, writer, science communication advocate

  • "This is the book we've all been waiting for. Parents, teachers, and policymakers have long yearned for the original architect of self-control research to tell us what to take away from the single most important experiment in social science history. In this masterpiece, Walter Mischel explains why waiting for two little treats at age four, rather than devouring one right away, is so prognostic of later life outcomes. Most important, he illustrates with solid research and insightful anecdote the most important claim of the book: that self-control can be taught and mastered."—Angela Lee Duckworth, Associate Professor, Department of Psychology, University of Pennsylvania, and a 2013 MacArthur Foundation Fellow

  • "This is an amazing - eye-opening, transformative, riveting - book from one of the greatest psychologists of our time. Mischel delivers the powerful message that self-control can be enhanced, and shows us how!"—Carol S. Dweck, Professor of Psychology, Stanford University, author of Mindset

  • "Walter Mischel's 'marshmallow test' has become legendary, a harbinger of our understanding the lifetime role of cognitive control, self-discipline, and will. His book, The Marshmallow Test, a charmingly told scientific story, makes clear the test is not just about youngsters, but is helpful to us all in the marshmallow moments we face through life. Mischel has written a wonderful book, engaging, enlightening, and profound."—Daniel Goleman, author of Emotional Intelligence and Focus

  • "This marvelous book is unique, and beautifully written from beginning to end. The range that Walter Mischel covers-from creative cognitive science to neuroscience to genetics-is breathtaking. This speaks for science at its best. Bravo!"—Eric R. Kandel, MD, Winner of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, University Professor, Department of Neuroscience, Columbia University, author of The Age of Insight and In Search of Memory

  • "Walter Mischel is one of the most influential psychologists of the 20th century, and The Marshmallow Test will make him one of the most influential in this century, too. Thanks in no small part to his groundbreaking (and viral) findings, we know that self-control is among the most important contributors to human flourishing, and that though its biological roots run deep, it can be dramatically enhanced in individuals and societies. Here we have the maestro himself explain the science and its implications­-wisely, accessibly, and humanely."—Steven Pinker, Johnstone Professor of Psychology, Harvard University, and the author of The Better Angels of Our Nature.

  • "Walter Mischel has changed psychologists' view of human potential, and The Marshmallow Test will change yours. The book is full of insights about self-control and how to master it, though it does create one impulse that is hard to resist-the desire to read the book cover to cover. It is both a fascinating story of a brilliant researcher at work and a recipe for how to change one's life."—Timothy Wilson, Sherrell J. Aston Professor of Psychology, University of Virginia, author of Redirect

  • "Expansive, eye-opening...All of the anecdotes here, not to mention the entire chapter on practical applications, provide insight into how we can maximize our willpower¾without overextending its potential....To be human is to grapple with the will: this stimulating books encourages us to make mindful decisions."—Publishers Weekly

  • "Mischel uses his impressive experience along with others' related research in the field to explore the nature-and nurture-of willpower. He explains simply and elegantly the complex neural and cognitive components that affect our ability to self-regulate."—Success

  • "This masterwork is a profound and inspiring exploration of the essential question of how we struggle to regulate our own behavior and how we can more frequently win the battle for self-control."—David Laibson, Department of Economics, Harvard University

On Sale
Sep 23, 2014
Page Count
336 pages
Little Brown Spark

Walter Mischel

About the Author

Walter Mischel holds the Robert Johnston Niven chair as professor of humane letters in psychology at Columbia University. He is the author of more than two hundred scientific papers as well as the coauthor of Introduction to Personality, now in its eighth edition. He has been elected to the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and has won the Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award of APA and the Grawemeyer Award for Psychology. He lives in New York.

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