Adult Attachment Lab (Shaver)

The Adult Attachment Lab advances current understanding of adult attachment dynamics. Research focuses on understanding the conscious and unconscious dynamics of the attachment behavioral system and associations between adult attachment style and other psychological constructs such as self-esteem, personality traits, death anxiety, and compassion and altruism.

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Dr. Shaver studies the application of Bowlby’s attachment theory to research on loneliness and adult romantic love. Currently, he is extending this work to the study of attachment-style differences in defenses or coping strategies, sexual motivation and behavior, and compassion and altruism.


Dr. Shaver has proposed a prototype methodology for mapping individuals’ and cultures’ cognitive representations of the emotion domain and, with the help of coworkers in other countries, is investigating everyday conceptions of emotions such as love and shame in various cultures.