Sabbatical Peter Kuppens: A new approach for emotion dynamic research
Following the scientific motivation outlined below, my aim during this sabbatical period is to carve out the future of research into emotion dynamics by analyzing when and under what circumstances, and with which mechanisms emotion-dynamic patterns play a role in mental health. While I want to do this with an open perspective, I anticipate to focus on thinking through the value of two novel research lines. - I wish to focus on within-person changes in emotion dynamics, where there is a need for the development of a pronounced theoretical model and the subsequent study of long-term longitudinal data (which we have been collecting over the past year). - I wish to focus on the role of interpersonal factors, in particular how in the context of interpersonal relationships certain emotions/mood/symptoms are mutually influenced over time. This will be combined with an existing research line on the social acceptance of negative emotions and its impact on mental well-being (e.g., how the belief that we shouldn't be unhappy makes us more unhappy). I wish to spend part of the period at a different research institution to help achieve these aims. The option I am currently considering is to organize a research visit (duration: 5-6 months) to the University of California Berkeley. Two colleagues in particular are working there whose research interests are directly linked to the two research directions mentioned above. Dr. Aaron Fischer investigates the role of in-person changes in symptom dynamics in the development of affective disorder and its treatment. In addition, from October 2020 onwards, we will jointly supervise an ERC Marie Curie fellow who will during this period be in Dr. Fischer’s lab in Berkeley, making the timing of the visit extra meaningful. Dr. Iris Mauss has been active for many years in research on the valuing of happiness in determining emotional well-being, and with her expertise and research group could be the ideal sparring partner to think about the interpersonal dimension of emotion dynamics and the role of social expectations in this respect. A major hesitation for this research visit concerns to large extra cost of living it would involve (in particular in terms of house rental).