Barbara Fredrickson Kenan Distinguished Professor, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, with appointments in Psychology and the School of Business
Barbara Fredrickson, Ph.D., world-renowned social psychologist, is Kenan Distinguished Professor of Psychology and Director of the Positive Emotions and Psychophysiology Lab at the University of North Carolina. Her recent work focuses on love and reveals how micro-moments of love and other forms of positivity nourish health, wisdom, and longevity.
Fredrickson is best known for her broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions, which suggests that positive emotions lead to novel, expansive, or exploratory behavior, and that, over time, these actions build knowledge, social relationships, and physical health. Her scientific contributions have influenced scholars, readers and the business community worldwide, in disciplines ranging from finance to healthcare.
Fredrickson's work is supported by grants from the National Institute of Health. Her research and teaching have been recognized with many honors, including, in 2000, the American Psychological Association's inaugural Templeton Prize in Positive Psychology and in 2013, the inaugural Christopher Peterson Gold Medal, the highest honor bestowed by the International Positive Psychology Association.
Her work has been featured in The New York Times, The Economist, CNN, NPR, PBS, The Atlantic, U.S. News & World Report, USA Today, O Magazine, and many others. She is the author most recently of Love 2.0: How Our Supreme Emotion Affects Everything We Feel, Think, Do, and Become and Positivity: Top-Notch Research Reveals the Upward Spiral That Will Change Your Life. Fredrickson has the esteemed honor of twice being invited to brief His Holiness the Dalai Lama on her research.