Nick Buttrick

Position title: Assistant Professor


318 Psychology

Research Area(s)
Social and Personality

Lab Website
Action Research Facility

Research Interests
Our lab uses a socioecological approach to understand contemporary society, one that examines how structural, demographic, geographic, cultural, and historical factors create individual psychology in real-world contexts. We use a multi-method approach, including laboratory experiments, on-line studies, archival research, and surveys with a stress on promoting open replicable practices. Currently, we are focusing on the psychology of peculiarly American cultural beliefs including the symbolism of gun ownership (such as how people think about guns, what historical and demographic patterns have shaped those thoughts, how they use them to cope with threat in everyday life, how they use them to signal identity, and what happens to communities in the wake of gun violence), the ways in which people think about effort and success (such as how people think about those who succeed, how they think about the failures of themselves and others, how they use a linkage between effort and success to shore up beliefs about hierarchy, meritocracy, and deservingness, how such beliefs are shaped by schemas like the Protestant Work Ethic, how these beliefs differ by sociodemographic positioning such as class, and how these beliefs are similar to and different from non-American cultural traditions surrounding the importance of effort), and the political and motivational consequences of America’s built environments (such as the ways in which walkable neighborhoods or neighborhoods full of parks and recreation allow for different sorts of interpersonal interactions among strangers and how residential mobility and its decline in the United States shapes the ways that people are able to form relationships). As a lab full of pragmatists, we’re ultimately interested in making sure that our research *does* something, using the power of theoretically-driven psychology to develop meaningful interventions into the world.

Representative Publications
Buttrick, N. R. & Mazen, J. (2022). Historical prevalence of slavery predicts contemporary American gun ownership. PNAS Nexus 1(3), pgac117. DOI: 10.1093/pnasnexus/pgac117

Buttrick, N. R., Westgate, E. C., & Oishi, S. (2022). Reading literary fiction is associated with a more complex worldview. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin. DOI: 10.1177/01461672221106059

Buttrick, N. R. & Oishi, S. (2021). The cultural dynamics of declining residential mobility. American Psychologist, 76(6), 904-916. DOI: 10.1037/amp0000881

Ebersole, C. R., Mathur, M. B., Baranski, E., Bart-Plange, D.-J., Buttrick, N. R.,…& Nosek, B. A. (2020). Many Labs 5: Testing pre-data-collection peer review as an intervention to increase replicability. Advances in Methods and Practices in Psychological Science, 3(3), 309-331. DOI: 10.1177/2515245920958687.

Buttrick, N. R. (2020). Protective gun ownership as a coping mechanism. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 15(4), 835-855. DOI: 10.1177/1745691619898847

Buttrick, N. R., Moulder, R., & Oishi, S. (2020). Historical change in the moral foundations of political persuasion. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 46(11), 1523-1537. DOI: 10.1177/0146167220907467

Buttrick, N. R.*, Axt, J. R.*, Ebersole, C. R., & Huband, J. (2020). Re-assessing the incremental predictive validity of Implicit Association Tests. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 88. DOI: 10.1016/j.jesp.2019.103941

*Authors contributed equally

Oishi, S., Koo, M., & Buttrick, N.R. (2019). The socio-ecological psychology of upward social mobility. American Psychologist, 74(7), 751-763. DOI: 10.1037/amp0000422

Buttrick, N.R., Choi, H. Wilson, T.D, Oishi, S., …& Wilks, D. (2019). Cross-cultural consistency and relativity in the enjoyment of thinking versus doing. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. DOI: 10.1037/pspp0000198

Camerer, C. F., Dreber, A., Holtzmeister, F., Ho, T.-H.,…Buttrick, N.R.,…& Wu, H. (2018). Evaluating the Replicability of Social Science Experiments in Nature and Science between 2010 and 2015. Nature Human Behaviour, 2, 637-644. DOI: 10.1038/s41562-018-0399-z

Buttrick, N.R. & Oishi, S. (2017). The psychological consequences of income inequality. Social and Personality Psychology Compass, 11, e12304. DOI: 10.1111/spc3.12304

Wilson, T.D. & Buttrick, N.R. (2016). New directions in social psychological interventions to improve academic achievement. Journal of Educational Psychology, 108(3), 392-396. DOI: 10.1037/edu0000111