Chicago GSB

Ayelet Fishbach Ayelet Fishbach
Jeffrey Breakenridge Keller Professor of Behavioral Science and Marketing

Ph.D. Tel Aviv University, 2000

The University of Chicago, Booth School of Business
Center for Decision Research
5807 South Woodlawn Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637

Email address:
Phone: 773.834.8673
Fax: 773.753.0556

Curriculum Vitae (PDF)

Lab Meetings Lab Photos

Research Areas
Decision Making
Social Cognition

Research Interests
I am interested in the processes of self-regulation, specifically in the simultaneous pursuit of multiple goals. In most real-life situations, people hold and intend to pursue several concomitant goals (e.g., to enjoy various culinary delights while also wanting a slim figure, pursuing career objectives while also wanting to spend time with family and friends). Additionally, environmental cues, social opportunities and personal factors can activate these different and potentially inconsistent motivations. My ongoing research is set to explore the regulation of multiple goals in multiple goal systems.

A primary focus of my research is on the processes of self-control. I am interested in how people protect their long-term goals from the influence of short-term motives or temptations. My research assumes that when short-term motives threaten the attainment of long-term goals, people proactively employ self-control strategies designed to offset the influence of short-term motives on their behavior. Self-control is often an intentional process of committing to long-term goals and eliminating tempting alternatives. However, self-control may also be an unconscious process. My research explores some of these deliberative and implicit self-control processes.

Selected Publications
Sheldon, O. J., & Fishbach. A. (In press). Anticipating and Resisting the Temptation to Behave Unethically. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin.
Fishbach. A., & Woolley, K. (In press). Avoiding ethical temptations. Current opinion in psychology.
Shen, L., Fishbach. A., & Hsee, C. K. (In press). The Motivating-Uncertainty Effect: Uncertainty Increases Resource Investment in the Process of Reward Pursuit. Journal of Consumer Research.
Dai, X., & Fishbach. A. (In press). How non-consumption shapes desire. Journal of Consumer Research.
Maimaran, M., & Fishbach. A. (In press.) If it’s useful and you know it, do you eat? Preschoolers refrain from instrumental food. Journal of Consumer Research.
Klein, N., & Fishbach. A. (2014) Feeling Good at the Right Time: Why People Value Predictability in Goal Attainment. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 55., 21-30.
Touré-Tillery, M., & Fishbach, A. (2014). How to Measure Motivation: A Guide for the Experimental Social Psychologist. Social and Personality Psychology Compass, 8, 328–341.
Fishbach, A., Koo, M, & Finkelstein, S. R. (2014). Motivation Resulting from Completed and Missing Actions. In J. Olson & M. P. Zanna (Eds.). Advances in experimental social psychology, 50(pp. 257-307), Elsevier.
Fishbach, A. (2014). The Motivational Self is More Than the Sum of its Goals. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 37, 143-144.
Dai, X., & Fishbach, A. (2013). When waiting to choose increases patience. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 121, 256-266.
Fishbach, A., & Choi, J. (2012). When thinking about goals undermines goal pursuit. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 118, 99–107.
Converse, B. A., & Fishbach, A. (2012). Instrumentality boosts appreciation: Helpers are more appreciated while they are useful. Psychological Science, 23, 560-566.
Touré-Tillery, M., & Fishbach, A. (2012). The end justifies the means, but only in the middle. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 141, 570-583.
Koo, M., & Fishbach, A. (2012). The small-area hypothesis: Effects of progress monitoring on goal adherence. Journal of Consumer Research, 39, 493-509.
Finkelstein, S. R., & Fishbach, A. (2012). Tell me what I did wrong: experts seek and respond to negative feedback. Journal of Consumer Research, 39, 22-38.
Fishbach, A., Henderson, D. H., & Koo, M. (2011). Pursuing goals with others: Group identification and motivation resulting from things done versus things left undone. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 140, 520-534.
Touré-Tillery, M., & Fishbach, A. (2011). The course of motivation. Journal of Consumer Psychology, special issue on Applications of Behavioral Decision Theory.
Köpetz, C., Faber, T., Fishbach, A., & Kruglanski, A. W. (2011). The multifinality constraints effect: How goal multiplicity narrows the means set to a focal end. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.
Choi, J., & Fishbach, A. (2011). Choice is an end versus a means. Journal of Marketing Research, 48, 544-554.
Sheldon, O. J., & Fishbach, A. (2011). Resisting the temptation to compete: Self-control promotes cooperation in mixed-motive interactions Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 47, 403-410.
Eyal, T., & Fishbach, A., (2010). Do global and local systems feel different? Psychological Inquiry, 21, 213-215.
Orehek, E., Dechesne, M., Fishbach, A., Kruglanski, A. W., & Chun W. Y. (2010). On the inferential epistemics of trait centrality in impression formation. European Journal of Social Psychology, 40, 1120-1135.
Finkelstein, S. R., & Fishbach, A. (2010). When healthy food makes you hungry. Journal of Consumer Research, 37, 357-367.
Koo. M. & Fishbach, A. (2010). A silver lining of standing in line: Queuing increases value of products. Journal of Marketing Research, 47, 713-724.
Fishbach, A., Eyal, T., & Finkelstein, S. R. (2010). How positive and negative feedback motivate goal pursuit. Social and Personality Psychology Compass, 4, 517-530.
Koo, M., & Fishbach, A. (2010). Climbing the goal ladder: How upcoming actions increase level of aspiration. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 99, 1-13.
Fitzsimons, G. M., & Fishbach, A. (2010). Shifting closeness: Interpersonal effects of personal goal progress. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 98, 535–549.
Zhang, Y., & Fishbach, A. (2010). Counteracting obstacles with optimistic predictions. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 139, 16-31.
Fishbach, A., Zhang, Y., & Trope, Y. (2010). Counteractive evaluation: Asymmetric shifts in the implicit value of conflicting motivations. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 46, 29-38.
Fishbach, A. Zhang, Y., & Koo, M. (2009). The Dynamics of Self-Regulation. European Review of Social Psychology, 20, 15-344.
Myrseth, K. O. R., & Fishbach, A. (2009). Self-control: a function of knowing when and how to exercise restraint. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 18, 247-252.
Fishbach, A.(2009). The function of value in self-regulation. Journal of Consumer Psychology, 19,129-133.
Myrseth, K. O., Fishbach, A. & Trope, Y. (2009). Counteractive self-control: When making temptation available makes temptation less tempting. Psychological Science, 20, 159 – 163.
Fishbach, A. & Zhang, Y. (2008). Together or apart: When goals and temptations complement versus compete. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 94,547-559.
Koo, M., & Fishbach, A. (2008). Dynamics of Self-Regulation: How (Un)accomplished Goal Actions Affect Motivation. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 94,183-195.
Fishbach, A., & Labroo, A. A. (2007). Be Better or Be Merry: How Mood Affects Self-Control. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 93, 158-173.
Zhang, Y., Fishbach, A., & Dhar, R. W. (2007). When Thinking Beats Doing: The Role of Optimistic Expectations in Goal-Based Choice. Journal of Consumer Research, 34, 567 - 578.
Zhang, Y., Fishbach, A., & Kruglanski, A. W. (2007). The Dilution Model: How Additional Goals Undermine the Perceived Instrumentality of a Shared Path. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 92, 389-401.
Fishbach, A., Dhar , R., & Zhang, Y. (2006). Subgoals as Substitutes or Complements: The Role of Goal Accessibility. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 91,232–242.
Fishbach, A., & Shah, J. Y. (2006). Self Control in Action: Implicit Dispositions toward Goals and Away from Temptations. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 90, 820-832.
Fishbach, A., & Dhar, R. (2005). Goals as excuses or guides: The liberating effect of perceived goal progress on choice. Journal of Consumer Research, 32, 370-377.
Fishbach, A., & Trope, Y. (2005). The Substitutability of External Control and Self-Control in Overcoming Temptation. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 41, 256-270.
Zhang, Y., & Fishbach, A. (2005). The role of anticipated emotions in the endowment effect. Journal of Consumer Psychology, 41, 256-270.
Fishbach, A., Shah, J. Y., & Kruglanski, A. W. (2004). Emotional Transfer in Goal Systems. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 40, 723-738.
Friedman, R. S., Fishbach, A., Förster, J., & Werth, L. (2003). Attentional priming effects on creativity. Creativity Research Journal, 15, 277-286.
Fishbach, A., Friedman, R. S., & Kruglanski, A. W. (2003). Leading us not unto temptation: Momentary allurements elicit overriding goal activation. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 84, 296-309.
Trope, Y., & Fishbach, A. (2000). Counteractive self-control in overcoming temptation. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 79, 493-506.
Fishbach, A., & Shen, L. (In press). The explicit and implicit ways of overcoming temptation. In Sherman, J. W., Gawronski, B., & Trope, Y. (Eds.), Dual Process Theories of the Social Mind. New York: Guilford Press.
Fishbach, A.,& Touré-Tillery, M., (2013). Goals and motivation. In R. Biswas-Diener & E. Diener (Eds.) , Noba textbook series: Psychology. Champaign, IL: DEF Publishers. DOI:
Fishbach, A., & Finkelstein, S. R. (2012). How feedback influences persistence, disengagement, and change in goal pursuit. In H. Aarts. & A. Elliot (Eds.), goal-directed behavior (pp. 203-230). Psychology Press.
Fishbach, A. & Converse, B. A., (2010). Identifying and battling temptation. In K. D. Vohs, & R. F. Baumeister (Eds.), Handbook of Self-Regulation: Research, Theory and Applications (2nd edition; pp. 244-260), New York: Guilford.
Fishbach, A. & Myrseth, K. O. R. (2010). The Dieter’s Dilemma: Identifying When and How to Control Consumption. In Dubé, L. (Ed.), Obesity Prevention: The Role of Society and Brain on Individual Behavior, (pp. 353-363), Elsevier.
Fishbach, A. & Converse, B. A., (2010). Walking the Line between Goals and Temptations: Asymmetric Effects of Counteractive Control. In R. R. Hassin, K. N. Ochsner, & Y. Trope, (Eds.), Self control in society, mind, and brain, (pp. 389-407), New York: Oxford University Press.
Fishbach, A., (2009). The Dynamics of Self-Regulation. In J. R., Forgas , R. F., Baumeister, & D. M., Tice (Eds.), Psychology of Self-Regulation: Cognitive, Affective and Motivational Processes, (pp. 163-181), New York: Psychology Press.
Fishbach, A. & Zhang, Y., (2009). The Dynamics of Self-Regulation: When Goals Commit Versus Liberate. In M. Wänke (Ed.), The Social Psychology of Consumer Behavior (in the series Frontiers of Social Psychology), (pp. 365-386), NY: Psychology Press.
Fishbach, A. & Dhar, R., (2007). Dynamics of goal-based choice. In C. P. Haugtvedt, P. M. Herr & F. R. Kardes (Eds.), Handbook of Consumer Psychology, (pp. 611-637), NY: Psychology Press.
Fishbach, A. & Trope, Y., (2007). Implicit and Explicit Mechanisms of Counteractive Self-Control. In J. Shah and W. Gardner (Eds.), Handbook of motivation science, (pp. 281-294), NY: Guilford.
Fishbach, A. & Ferguson, M. F. (2007). The Goal Construct in Social Psychology. In A. W. Kruglanski & T. E. Higgins (Eds.) Social Psychology: Handbook of Basic Principles. (pp. 490-515). NY: Guilford.
Trope, Y., & Fishbach, A. (2005). Going Beyond the Motivation Given: Self-Control and Situational Control over Behavior. In R. R. Hassin, J. Uleman & J. A. Bargh (Eds.),The New Unconscious, (pp. 537-565), NY: Oxford University Press.
Kruglanski, A.W., Shah, J.Y., Fishbach, A., Friedman, R. S., Chun, W. Y., & Sleeth- Keppler, D (2002). A theory of goal systems: Implications for social cognition, affect, and action. In M. P. Zanna (Ed.). Advances in experimental social psychology, 34, 331-376, New York: Academic Press.