Dr. Kathi Diel

Dr. Kathi Diel

Akademische Rätin

Geb. A2 4 - Raum 1.24
Tel.: +49(0)681/302-6564
Fax: +49(0)681/302-4640




Research Interests

My research examines social comparison processes and how upward versus downward comparisons affect people's motivation (pushing, coasting) and emotions (e.g., guilt, pride, envy). Moderate (vs. extreme) upward comparisons can motivate (pushing), whereas downward comparisons tend to hinder motivation and effort investment (coasting). In addition, using intervention studies, I test whether instructed upward or downward comparisons influence motivation and emotions, and thus goal attainment, in everyday life.

With a focus on experience sampling studies, I examine people's environmental behavior in everyday life and how people's motivation and behavior to act pro-environmentally are influenced by social comparison processes.



Diel, K., & Friese, M. (2024). Morally charged: Why people prefer to compare themselves with others who are less environmentally friendly than themselves. Journal of Environmental Psychologyhttps://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvp.2024.102318

Diel, K., Hofmann, W., Grelle, S., Boecker, L., & Friese, M. (in press). Prepare to compare: Effects of an intervention involving upward and downward social comparisons on goal pursuit in daily life. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin.

Unkelbach, C., Alves, H., Baldwin, M., Crusius, J., Diel, K., Galinsky, A. D., Gast, A., Hofmann, W., Imhoff, R., Genschow, O., Lammers, J., Pauels, E., Schneider, I. K., Topolinski, S., Westfal, M., & Mussweiler, T. (2023). Relativity in social cognition: Basic processes and novel applications of social comparisons. European Review of Social Psychologyhttps://doi.org/10.1080/10463283.2022.2161043

Diel*, K., Broeker*, L., Raab, M., & Hofmann, W. (2021). Motivational and emotional effects of social comparison in Sports. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 57, 102048. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.psychsport.2021.102048
*shared first authorship.

Diel, K., Grelle, S., & Hofmann, W. (2021). A motivational Framework of social comparison. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 120(6), 1415-1430. https://doi.org/10.1037/pspa0000204

Fleischmann, A., Lammers, J., Diel, K., Hofmann, W., & Galinsky, A. D. (2021). More threatening and more diagnostic: How moral comparisons differ from social comparisons. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. https://doi.org/10.1037/pspi0000361

Hofmann, W., Dohle, S., & Diel, K. (2020). Changing behavior using integrative self-control theory. In: M. S. Hagger, L. D. Cameron, K. Hamilton, N. Hankonen, & T. Lintunen (Eds.), The handbook of behavior change (pp. 150 - 163). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Rom, S.C., Katzir, M., Diel, K., & Hofmann, W. (2019). On trading off labor and leisure: a process model of perceived autonomy and opportunity costs. Motivation Science. https://doi.org/10.1037/mot0000148

Diel, K., & Hofmann, W. (2019). Inspired to perspire: The predicted interplay of social comparison direction and standard extremity in the context of challenging exercising goals. Social Cognition, 37, 247-265. https://doi.org/10.1521/soco.2019.37.3.247

Dohle, S., Diel, K., & Hofmann, W. (2018). Executive functions and the self-regulation of eating behavior: A review. Appetite, 124, 4-9. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.appet.2017.05.041

Hofmann, W., Diel, K., & Seibel, M. (2018). Foods, sex, and drugs: Appetitive desires and subjective well-being. In E. Diener & S. Oishi (Eds.), Handbook of well-being. Salt Lake City, UT: DEF Publishers.