Professor of Psychology
David Dunning is a Professor of Psychology at Cornell University. An experimental social psychologist, Dr. Dunning is a fellow of both the American Psychological Society and the American Psychological Association. He has published over 135 scholarly journal articles, book chapters, and commentaries, and has been a visiting scholar at the University of Michigan, Yale University, the University of Cologne (Germany), and the University of Mannheim (Germany). He has also served as an associate editor of the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology and as the Executive Officer of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology. Currently, he is President of the Society of Experimental Social Psychology and the President-Elect of the Society for the Study of Motivation. He also serves on the Publication & Communication Board of the American Psychological Association.
His work focuses primarily on the accuracy with which people view themselves and their peers. In his most widely-cited research, he showed that people tend to hold flattering opinions of themselves and their decisions that cannot be justified from objective evidence, work that has been featured in numerous newspapers (e.g., New York Times), magazines (e.g., U.S. News & World Report ), radio (e.g., National Public Radio), and television (e.g., CBS Early Show). It has been the subject of a radio documentary by CBC Radio, as well as an essay by film director Errol Morris. It has even been mentioned in a Doonesbury cartoon.
This work on the self has been supported financially by the National Institute of Mental Health, the National Science Foundation, and the Templeton Foundation. It was recently reviewed in his book Self-insight: Roadblocks and detours on the path to knowing thyself (2005, Psychology Press).
He has also published work on eyewitness identification, depression, motivated distortion in visual perception, stereotyping, and behavioral economics.
BA – Psychology (1982) – Michigan State University
PhD – Psychology (1986) – Stanford University