My research focuses on the nature and structure of Conscientiousness. I employ a three-step approach to this endeavor that first starts with evaluating historical views of the personality trait and its development. Second, I incorporate current iterations of widely accepted trait inventories into my studies. Third is the process of scouring available research for various concepts and instruments that have been developed independently of Conscientiousness but seem to bear some clear relationship to the personality trait. While historical evaluation and the use of currently established measures moves us in a direction of unifying theory, independent measures especially like those associated with Grit, may offer greater insights into what trait researchers should incorporate into their understanding of the structure of Conscientiousness.
In addition to my attempts to further the understanding of such a pivotal personality trait associated with a wide array of positive life outcomes, personal and professional success and achievement through the evaluation of established measures, I am currently developing two new measures. The first, rooted in the idea that a resistance to impulse may be a biologically based individual difference that allows those high in resistance to not only avoid distractions and impulses that could potentially derail their long-term goal pursuits, but to be unaware of these potential distractions all together. The second is a multi-dimensional measure of goal related effort intensity. Successful individuals, outliers who consistently achieve the goals they lay out for themselves, are intense and focused and I hope to identify features of their personalities that allow them to be so undauntingly successful.