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Motivation, self-control and economic behavior

Self-control problems are pervasive. Obvious examples range from health-related issues (dieting and exercising) to saving behavior.

Beyond those, the capacity for self-control has been shown to have a large impact on productivity and performance, e.g. in the workplace or at school. The study of selfcontrol is one aspect of a broader field studying human motivation and the self-regulation of behavior.

The Forum “Motivation, Self-Control, and Economic Behavior” is an interdisciplinary endeavor providing a scientific platform structuring research in this field at the University of Cologne. Specific research topics include individual differences in self-control and their consequences for economic performance, the neural basis of human self-regulation, the effects of cognitive depletion, and the regulation of impulsive consumer behavior.

In the longer run, the research agenda features two prominent objectives. The first is to develop improved models of motivation and self-control, based on empirical evidence from both economics and psychology. The second is to develop better interventions to improve human self-regulation and aid economic agents in their decision making.

Prof. Carlos Alos-Ferrer, Chair of Economics

Prof. Dr. Wilhelm Hofmann, Social Cognition Center Cologne
Prof. Dr. Erik Hölzl, Institut für Soziologie und Sozialpsychologie (ISS)
Prof. Dr. Matthias Sutter, Chair in Economics: Behavior and Design

External cooperators
Prof. Dr. Anja Achtziger, Zeppelin University
Prof. Dr. Georg Kirchsteiger, ECARES-Université Libre de Bruxelles