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Converse, Benjamin

Benjamin Converse

Primary Appointment


Contact Information

Telephone: 243-2885

Research Interests

goal pursuit and motivation; social judgment; behavioral decision making; cooperation and competition

Research Description

goal pursuit and motivation; social judgment; behavioral decision making; cooperation and competition UNLEASH (Undergraduate Research) Work in our lab revolves around goal pursuit and decision-making, across individual-, cooperative-, and competitive environments. For example, how do people evaluate their helpers and their rivals? Does the way people think about their rivals affect their style of competition or their motivation to win? What factors influence people?s emotional and behavioral responses to receiving help from others? More generally, we examine the consequences of motivation and decision-making in contexts as diverse as voting behavior, academic motivation, and consumer decision making. We conduct lab experiments, field studies, and online studies, and make an effort to extend our investigations beyond undergraduate samples to also include community samples and specialized samples such as professional organizations. RAs will have the opportunity to participate in weekly lab meetings and many phases of the research process, including preparing and conducting experiments and surveys, managing study data, and working with the research team to refine experimental procedures. As RAs become more experienced in the lab, there will be opportunities to take a more advanced role in the research process. Contact: Annalisa Myer:

Selected Publications

Converse BA, Risen JL, Carter TJ, Investing in karma: when wanting promotes helping., 2012; Psychological science. 23(8) 923-30 PMID: 22760884 |

Converse BA, Fishbach A, Instrumentality boosts appreciation: helpers are more appreciated while they are useful., 2012; Psychological science. 23(6) 560-6 PMID: 22539334 |

Sackett AM, Meyvis T, Nelson LD, Converse BA, Sackett AL, You're having fun when time flies: the hedonic consequences of subjective time progression., 2010; Psychological science. 21(1) 111-7 PMID: 20424031 |

Keysar B, Converse BA, Wang J, Epley N, Reciprocity is not give and take: asymmetric reciprocity to positive and negative acts., 2009; Psychological science. 19(12) 1280-6 PMID: 19121138 |

Epley N, Converse BA, Delbosc A, Monteleone GA, Cacioppo JT, Believers' estimates of God's beliefs are more egocentric than estimates of other people's beliefs., 2009; Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 106(51) 21533-8 PMID: 19955414 | PMCID: PMC2787468

Converse BA., Reinhard DA., On Rivalry and Goal Pursuit: Shared Competitive History, Legacy Concerns, and Strategy Selection, ; Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 110(2) 191-213 |