Head of Social Processes Lab

In my research I seek to understand how social contexts motivate people’s thoughts and actions.

Kai Sassenberg


I study motivation and self-regulation in relation to social power and leadership, inter- and intragroup processes, cognitive flexibility, and the use of digital media. I try to combine lab and field research as well as different research methods, to gain a comprehensive understanding of the processes underlying a phenomenon as well as its applied relevance and implications.

  • Work and Organizational Psychology (lecture)
  • Motivation; Self-regulation
  • Applied social psychology
  • Psychology Today Blog on social power and changes in social psychological research.
  • Leibniz Podcast on threat regulation and the conspirational thinking
    during the Covid-19 pandemic (German).
  • Der Standard on Emotions and Internetuse (German).
  • Since 2008: Professor at the University of Tuebingen and head of the Social Processes Lab at IWM
  • 2018: Visiting Scholar at the University of Queensland, Brisbane
  • 2007: Associate Professor in Organizational Psychology, University of Groningen (NL)
  • 2004: Habilitation, University of Jena
  • 2002: Post-doc, Lehigh University (Bethlehem, PA, USA)
  • 2000-2006: Post-doc and Assistant Professor, University of Jena
  • 1999: PhD (Dr. rer. nat.) University of Goettingen
  • 1996: Diploma in Psychology (equ. to MSc), University of Mannheim