Eli J. Finkel

Professor of Psychology, Weinberg College of Arts & Sciences
Professor of Management & Organizations

Print Overview

Eli Finkel — author of the bestselling book The All-Or-Nothing Marriage — is a professor at Northwestern University, where he has appointments in the psychology department and the Kellogg School of Management and holds the Martin J. and Patricia Koldyke Outstanding Teaching Professorship. In his role as director of Northwestern’s Relationships and Motivation Lab (RAMLAB), he has published 130+ scientific papers and is a regular contributor to the Op-Ed page of The New York Times. The Economist has identified him as "one of the leading lights in the realm of relationship psychology."

Print Vita
PhD, 2001, Social & Quant. Psychology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
M.A., 1999, Social & Quant. Psychology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
B.A., 1997, Psychology, Northwestern University, Magna Cum Laude

Academic Positions
Professor of Management and Organizations (MORS), Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University, 2013-present
Professor of Psychology, Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences, Northwestern University, 2012-present
Associate Professor of Psychology, Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences, Northwestern University, 2008-2012
Visiting Scholar, Department of Social Psychology, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, 2008-2008
Assistant Professor of Psychology, Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences, Northwestern University, 2003-2008
NIH NRSA Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Psychology, Carnegie Mellon University, 2001-2003

Honors and Awards
One of the "Top 10 Professors at Northwestern", College Magazine
Martin J. and Patricia Koldyke Outstanding Teaching Professorship, 2014-2016
Daniel M. Wegner Theoretical Innovation Prize from the Society for Personality and Social Psychology for the 2015 Psychological Review article titled "Transactive Goal Dynamics.", 2016
National Science Foundation Grant (co-PI), Motivations for Promotion and Prevention in Relationship Initiation, 2010-2013
Gerald R. Miller Award for Early Career Achievement from the International Association for Relational Research, International Association for Relationship Research (IARR), 2010
Early Career Award, Relationship Researchers Interest Group of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology (SPSP), 2008
SAGE Young Scholars Award, $5,000 honorarium, 2008
National Science Foundation Grant (PI), Advancing Understanding About One Form of Interpersonal Violence, 2007-2012
Fellow, Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences (CASBS) Summer Institute: Emotion and Decision, 2004
Dissertation Award, International Association for Relationships Research (IARR), 2002

Editorial Positions
Editor, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 2014-2019
Editor, Annual Review of Psychology, 2017-2022
Editorial Board, Psychological Review, 2015
Editorial Board, Advances in Methods and Practices in Psychological Science, 2017
Editorial Board, Psychological Inquiry, 2017
Guest Editor, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 2015-2015

Print Research
Research Interests

1. Initial Romantic Attraction: What predicts interpersonal attraction? Do people really know what characteristics they desire in a romantic partner? How do dating innovations like speed-dating and online dating influence the romantic initiation process?
2. Interpersonal Conflict: When do people forgive transgressions? What are the consequences of forgiving? When does conflict escalate to the point of violence? Can we intervene to ameliorate the adverse effects of conflict in marriage?
3. Self-Control: When and how do interpersonal processes bring out the best vs. the worst in us? What types of social interaction cause us to feel energized versus exhausted? How do self-control processes influence relationship functioning and eating behavior?

For a full list of publications, see Finkel's website. Here's a sampling of recent publications.

Overall, N. C., M. T. Hammond, J. K. McNulty and Eli J. Finkel. 2016. When power shapes interpersonal behavior: Low relationship power predicts men's aggressive responses to low situational power. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 111(195-217)
Finkel, Eli J., E. Sackett and G. M. Fitzsimons. 2016. Transactive goal dynamics theory: A relational goals perspective on work teams and leadership. Research on Organizational Behavior.
Joel, S., P. W. Eastwick and Eli J. Finkel. Forthcoming. Is romantic desire predictable? Machine learning applied to initial romantic attraction. Psychological Science.
Fitzsimons, G. M. and Eli J. Finkel. Forthcoming. Transactive goal dynamics theory: A discipline-wide perspective. Current Directions in Psychological Science.
Finkel, Eli J., P. E. Eastwick and H. T. Reis. 2017. Replicability and other features of a high-quality science: Toward a balanced and empirical approach.. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.
Finkel, Eli J., J A Simpson and P. E. Eastwick. 2017. The psychology of close relationships: Fourteen core principles.. Annual Review of Psychology. 68: 383-411.
Laurin, K., G. M. Fitzsimons, Eli J. Finkel, K. L. Carswell, M. vanDellen, W. Hofmann, N. M. Lambert, P. W. Eastwick, F. D. Fincham and P. C. Brown. 2016. Power and the pursuit of a partner's goals. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology..
Durante, K. M., P. W. Eastwick, Eli J. Finkel, S M. Gangestad and J A Simpson. 2016. Pair-bonded relationships and romantic alternatives: Toward an integration of evolutionary and relationship science perspectives. Advances in Experimental Social Psychology. 53: 1-74.
Finkel, Eli J., E. O. Cheung, L. F. Emery, K. L. Carswell and G. M. Larson. 2015. The suffocation model: Why marriage in America is becoming an all-or-nothing institution. Current Directions in Psychological Science. 24: 238-244.
Finkel, Eli J. and P. W. Eastwick. 2015. Attachment and pairbonding. Current Opinions in Behavioral Sciences. 3: 7-11.
Finkel, Eli J., P. W. Eastwick and H. T. Reis. 2015. Best research practices in psychology: Illustrating epistemological and pragmatic considerations with the case of relationship science. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 108: 275-297.
Finkel, Eli J., M. I. Norton, H. T. Reis, D. Ariely, P. A. Caprariello, P. W. Eastwick, J H Frost and M. R. Maniaci. 2015. When does familiarity promote versus undermine interpersonal attraction? A proposed integrative model from erstwhile adversaries.. Perspectives on Psychological Science. 10: 3-19.
Fitzsimons, G. M., Eli J. Finkel and M. vanDellen. 2015. Transactive goal dynamics. Psychological Review. 122: 648-673.
Hoffmann, W., Eli J. Finkel and G. M. Fitzsimons. 2015. Close relationships and self-regulation: How relationship satisfaction facilitates momentary goal pursuit.. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 109: 434-452.
Hunt, L. L., P. W. Eastwick and Eli J. Finkel. 2015. Leveling the playing field: Acquaintance length predicts reduced assortative mating on attractiveness.. Psychological Science. 26: 1046-1053.
Eastwick, P. W., L. B. Luchies, Eli J. Finkel and L. L. Hunt. 2014. The Predictive Validity of Ideal Partner Preferences: A Review and Meta-Analysis. Psychological Bulletin.
Finkel, Eli J.. 2014. The I3 Model: Metatheory, Theory, and Evidence. 49
Finkel, Eli J., C. M. Hui, G. M. Fitzsimons, M. Kumashiro and W. Hoffmann. 2014. The Manhattan Effect: When Relationship Commitment Fails to Promote Support for Partner Interests. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.
Burnette, J. L., E. O'Boyle, E. M. VanEpps, J. M. Pollack and Eli J. Finkel. 2013. Mindsets Matter: A Meta-Analytic Review of the Effects of Implicit Theories on Self-Regulation. Psychological Bulletine. 139: 655-701.
Eastwick, P. W., B. M. Wilkey, Eli J. Finkel, N. M. Lambert, G. M. Fitzsimons, P. C. Brown and F. D. Fincham. 2013. Act With Authority: Romantic Desire at the Nexus of Power Possessed and Power Perceived. Journal of Experimental Psychology. 49: 267-271.
Finkel, Eli J., E. B. Slotter, L. B. Luchies, G. M. Walton and J. J. Gross. 2013. A Brief Intervention to Promote Conflict-Reappraisal Preserves Marital Quality Over Time. Psychological Science. 24: 1595-1601.
Luchies, L. B., J. Wieselquist, C. E. Rusbult, M. Kumashiro, P. W. Eastwick, M. K. Coolsen and Eli J. Finkel. 2013. Trust and Biased Memory of Transgressions in Romantic Relationships. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.
Tidwell, N. D., P. W. Eastwick and Eli J. Finkel. 2013. Perceived, Not Actual, Similarity Predicts Initial Attraction in a Live Romantic Context: Evidence from the Speed-Dating Paradigm. Personal Relationships. 20: 199-215.
Finkel, Eli J., C. N. DeWall, E. B. Slotter, J. K. McNulty, R. S., Pond Jr. and D. C. Atkins. 2012. Using I3 Theory to Clarify When Dispositional Aggressiveness Predicts Intimate Partner Violence Perpetration. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 102: 533-549.
Finkel, Eli J., P. W. Eastwick, B. R. Karney, H. T. Reis and S. Sprecher. 2012. Online Dating: A Critical Analysis From the Perspective of Psychological Science. Psychology Science in the Public Interest. 13: 3-66.
Herbst, K. C., Eli J. Finkel,  D Allan and G. M. Fitzsimons. 2012. On the Dangers of Pulling a Fast One: The Effects of Advertisement Disclaimer Speed on Purchase Intention. Journal of Consumer Research. 38: 909-919.
Ireland, M. E., R. B. Slatcher, P. W. Eastwick, L. E. Scissors, Eli J. Finkel and J. W. Pennebaker. 2011. Language Style Matching Predicts Relationship Inititation and Stability. Psychological Science. 22: 39-44.
Johnson, S. E., J. A. Richeson and Eli J. Finkel. 2011. Middle Class and Marginal? The Influence of Socioeconomic Status on the Self-Regulatory Resources of Students at an Elite Univeristy. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 100: 838-852.
Rick, S. I., D. A. Small and Eli J. Finkel. 2011. Fatal (Fiscal) Attraction: Spendthrifts and Tightwads in Marriage. Journal of Marketing Research. XLVIII: 228-237.
Luchies, L. B., Eli J. Finkel, M. Kumashiro and J. K. McNulty. 2010. The Doormat Effect: When Forgiving Erodes Self-Respect and Self-Concept Clarity. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 98: 734-749.
Finkel, Eli J., W. K. Campbell, L. E. Buffardi, M. Kumashiro and C. E. Rusbult. 2009. The Metamorphosis of Narcissus: Communal Activation Promotes Relationship Commitment Among Narcissists. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin. 35: 1271-1284.
Finkel, Eli J. and P. W. Eastwick. 2009. Arbitrary Social Norms and Sex Differences in Romantic Selectivity. Psychological Science. 20: 1290-1295.
Rusbult, C. E., Eli J. Finkel and M. Kumashiro. 2009. The Michelangelo Phenomenon. Current Directions in Psychological Science. 18: 305-309.
Eastwick, P. W. and Eli J. Finkel. 2008. Sex Differences in Mate Preferences Revisited: do People Know What They Initially Desire in a Romantic Partner?. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 94: 245-264.
Eastwick, P. W., Eli J. Finkel, T. Krishnamurti and G. Loewenstein. 2008. Mispredicting Distress Following Romantic Breakup: Revealing the Time Course of the Affective Forecasting Error. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology. 44: 800-807.
Eastwick, P. W., Eli J. Finkel, D. Mochon and Dan Ariely. 2007. Selective Versus Unselective Romantic Desire: Not All Reciprocity is Created Equal. Psychological Science. 18: 317-319.
Finkel, Eli J., W. K. Campbell, A. B. Brunell, A. N. Dalton, S. J. Scarbeck and T. L. Chartrand. 2006. High-Maintenance Interaction: Inefficient Social Coordination Impairs Self-Regulation. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 91: 456-475.
Exline, J. J., B. J. Bushman, R. F. Baumeister, W. K. Campbell and Eli J. Finkel. 2004. Too Proud to Let Go: Narcissistic Entitlement as a Barrier to Forgiveness. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 87: 894-912.
Book Chapters
Finkel, Eli J., G. M. Fitzsimons and M. vanDellen. 2016. "Self-regulation as a transactive process: Reconceptualizing the unit of analysis for goal setting, pursuit, and outcomes. In K. D. Vohs, & R. F. Baumeister (Eds.), Handbook of self-regulation." New York: Guilford, 3rd.
Finkel, Eli J. and P. W. Eastwick. 2015. "Interpersonal attraction: In search of a theoretical Rosetta stone." vol. 3: Interpersonal relations.
Finkel, Eli J. and C. I. Eckhardt. 2013. "Intimate Partner Violence." In The Oxford Handbook of Close Relationships, edited by J. A. Simpson & L. Campbell, 452-474. New York: Oxford.
Finkel, Eli J.. "How to fix the person you love." New York Times, September 9.
Finkel, Eli J.. "In defense of Tinder." New York Times, February.
Finkel, Eli J.. "The trauma of parenthood." New York Times, June.
Finkel, Eli J.. "The all-or-nothing marriage." New York Times, February.
Finkel, Eli J. and Grainne M Fitzsimons. "When helping hurts." New York Times, May.
Finkel, Eli J.. "Dear valentine, I hate it when you ....." New York Times, February.
Finkel, Eli J. and Benjamin R Karney. "The dubious science of online dating." New York Times, February.
Finkel, Eli J., Benjamin R Karney and Susan Sprecher. "Dating in a digital world: Understanding the psychology of online dating can turn a frustrating experience into a fruitful mission." Scientific American Mind, September.
Finkel, Eli J.. 2017. The All-or-Nothing Marriage. New York: Dutton.

Print Teaching
Full-Time / Evening & Weekend MBA
Negotiations Fundamentals (MORS-472-5)
This course is designed to provide the fundamentals of negotiation strategy and to improve students' skills in all phases of negotiation. The course provides an understanding of prescriptive and descriptive negotiation theory as it applies to two party negotiations, team negotiations, resolution of disputes, agents and ethics, and management of integrative and distributive aspects of the negotiation process. The course is based on a series of simulated negotiations in a variety of contexts. Attendance at every class meeting is mandatory.