PhD, University of Cambridge (UK), 2021
MPhil, University of Cambridge (UK), 2017
BSc, University of Konstanz (Germany), 2016
Dr Friedrich Götz is a personality researcher and Assistant Professor of Psychology at the University of British Columbia. Originally from Germany, Dr Götz bounced around the globe and obtained his PhD from the University of Cambridge in England before moving to beautiful British Columbia. In his research, Dr Götz pursues an interdisciplinary Big Data approach to study the causes and consequences of regional personality differences. His work has appeared in top journal such as Nature Human Behaviour, American Psychologist, and the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology and is frequently featured in national and international media outlets such as Scientific American, Forbes, DIE ZEIT, Neue Zürcher Zeitung and the BBC.
Outside of the lab, Friedrich enjoys running, kayaking and travelling and has a soft spot for dark chocolate, foreign languages, smoky Scotch, old cinemas, German poetry and long walks.
PSYC 305A – Personality Psychology
PSYC 528 – Methods in Social Psychology and Personality
PSYC 569 – Contemporary Conceptual Issues in Personality (The Geographical Dimension of Social and Personality Psychology)
The primary focus of Dr Götz’ research is on geographical psychology and more specifically the causes and consequences of regional personality differences. Dr Götz pursues an interdisciplinary Big Data approach that seeks to combine classic interactionist theories from social and personality psychology with an applied behavioural science perspective and consequential real-world outcomes.
Other research interests include mobility and migration, wanderlust, courage, entrepreneurship and experience sampling methods. Dr Götz is also a guest contributor at TIME Magazine. Together with Chris Wilson – TIME’s director of data journalism – he runs large-scale survey studies that have attracted more than 2.5 million participants to date.
Selected recent publications – for a full list visit Dr Götz’ Google Scholar profile.
Götz, F. M.*, Maertens*, R., Loomba, S., & van der Linden, S. (2023). Let the algorithm speak: How to use neural networks for automatic item generation in psychological scale development. Psychological Methods. https://doi.org/10.1037/met0000540
Mercadante, E. J., Tracy, J. L., & Götz, F. M. (2023). Greed communication predicts the approval and reach of US senators’ tweets. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 120(11). https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2218680120
Peters, H.*, Götz, F. M.*, Ebert, T.*, Müller, S. R., Rentfrow, P. J., Gosling, S. D., Obschonka, M., Ames, D., Potter, J., & Matz, S. C. (2023). Regional personality differences predict variation in early COVID-19 infections and mobility patterns indicative of social distancing.Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 124(4), 848–872. https://doi.org/10.1037/pspp0000439
Götz, F. M., Gosling, S. D., & Rentfrow, P. J. (2022). Small effects: The indispensable foundation for a cumulative psychological science. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 17(1), 205–215. https://doi.org/10.1177/1745691620984483
Ebert, T.*, Götz, F. M.*, Mewes, L.*, & Rentfrow, P. J. (2022). Spatial analysis for psychologists: How to use individual-level data for research at the geographically aggregated level. Psychological Methods. https://doi.org/10.1037/met0000493
Götz, F. M., Gvirtz, A., Galinsky, A. D., & Jachimowicz, J. M. (2021). How personality and policy predict pandemic behavior: Understanding sheltering-in-place in 55 countries at the onset of COVID-19. American Psychologist, 76(1), 39–49. https://doi.org/10.1037/amp0000740
Götz, F. M.*, Ebert, T.*, Gosling, S. D., Obschonka, M., Potter, J., & Rentfrow, P. J. (2021). Local housing market dynamics predict rapid shifts in cultural openness: A 9-year study across 199 cities. American Psychologist, 76(6), 947–961. https://doi.org/10.1037/amp0000812
Ebert, T.*, Götz, F. M.*, Gladstone, J. J., Müller, S. R., & Matz, S. C. (2021). Spending reflects not only who we are but also who we are around: The joint effects of individual and geographic personality on consumption. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 121(2), 378–393. https://doi.org/10.1037/pspp0000344
Götz, F. M., Stieger, S., Gosling, S. D., Potter, J., & Rentfrow, P. J. (2020). Physical topography is associated with human personality. Nature Human Behaviour, 4(11), 1135–1144. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41562-020-0930-x
Andrews Fearon, P., Götz, F. M., & Good, D. (2020). Pivotal moment for trust in science – don’t waste it. Nature, 580(7804), 456. https://doi.org/10.1038/d41586-020-01145-7
Götz, F. M. (2019). Publish, but don’t perish to publish. Nature Human Behaviour, 3, 1009. doi:10.1038/s41562-019-0669-4
* indicates shared first-authorship
Best Dissertation Prize (German Psychological Society: Personality Psychology and Psychological Diagnostics Section), 2021