Prof. dr. Catrin Finkenauer

“I am particularly interested in the question of how people can bring out the best and the worst in each other. Many people think that love and motivation are enough to maintain good relationships, but it is hard work.”

Research: costs and benefits of relationships

Combining social, clinical, experimental, biological, and developmental research, Prof. Finkenauer’s work centers on the costs and benefits of relationships for young people’s health and wellbeing. Her research focuses on interpersonal dynamics and examines how relationship partners influence each other. She is interested in all sorts of relationships: Parent-child relationships, intimate relationships, and friendships.


Aims to identify means to foster harmonious relationships

The research of her team seeks to understand how relationship partners bring out the best and the worst in each other. It aims to identify means of fostering harmonious relationships and preventing misunderstandings and conflict.


Specialties in research

Within this broad theme, the research of her team spans different topics, including secrecy, disclosure, privacy invasion, trust, self-control, family violence, divorce, and child abuse. Catrin is Professor Youth Studies at the Department Interdisciplinary Social Science and the Scientific Director of the university-wide strategic theme Dynamics of Youth. 


Interdisciplinary Social Sciences: Youth Studies
Inaugural lecture date