Christopher R. Agnew

Degree: Ph.D., 1994, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Christopher R. Agnew is Professor of Psychological Sciences at Purdue University. He received his undergraduate degree from Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service and his Ph.D. in Social Psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. His research focuses on close, interpersonal relationships and the use of relational models to understand broader social and health processes. He has published and presented his research widely, and has received funding from federal agencies (e.g., National Institutes of Health), private foundations (e.g., Robert Wood Johnson Foundation) and corporations. Dr. Agnew has served on the editorial boards for the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, and Personal Relationships (on which he served as Associate Editor). He is among the General Editors of the Cambridge University Press book series Advances in Personal Relationships. He was the recipient of the Early Career Award from the Relationships Researchers Interest Group of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology. He is a Fellow of the Association for Psychological Science, American Psychological Association, International Association for Relationship Research, Midwestern Psychological Association, the Society of Experimental Social Psychology, and the Society for Personality and Social Psychology. He served as President of the International Association for Relationship Research. He was honored with the creation of the Christopher R. Agnew Research Innovation Award by the Department of Psychology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, awarded annually to the graduate student enrolled in the Social Psychology Doctoral Program at UNC who demonstrates the most scholarly independence and promise. He has been privileged to work with a number of outstanding graduate students as major professor at Purdue, including Tim Loving (Facebook), Ben Le (Haverford College), Wind Goodfriend (Buena Vista University), Paul Etcheverry (Facebook), Justin LehmillerCandace Best (Augusta University), Laura VanderDrift (Syracuse University), Emily Short (U.S. Air Force Academy), Kenneth Tan (Singapore Management University), and Ezgi Besikci (Usak University). Most recently, he has worked with postdoctoral scholars Yuthika Girme (now at Simon Fraser University) and Benjamin Hadden (soon to join Facebook) and will be welcoming Juwon Lee (PhD, University of Kansas) and Ledina Imami (PhD, Wayne State University) to his lab at Purdue in August 2019. Dr. Agnew served as Head of Psychological Sciences at Purdue from 2009 to 2017. He currently serves as Associate Vice President for Research for Purdue University.

Research Interests:

(1) interpersonal relations, including timing, commitment processes, dissolution processes, and social network interactions and influence; and (2) the use of relational models to understand broader social and health processes.

Recent Representative Publications:

Agnew, C. R. (Ed.) (2014). Social influences on romantic relationships: Beyond the dyad. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

Agnew, C. R. & South, S. C. (Eds.) (2014). Interpersonal relationships and health: Social and clinical psychological mechanisms. New York: Oxford University Press.

VanderDrift, L. E., & Agnew, C. R. (2014). Relational consequences of personal goal pursuits. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 106, 927-940.

VanderDrift, L. E., Agnew, C. R., & Wilson, J. E. (2014). Spanish version of the Investment Model Scale. Personal Relationships, 21, 110-124.

Agnew, C. R., & Le, B. (2015). Prosocial behavior in close relationships: An interdependence approach. In W. G. Graziano & D. Schneider (Eds.),Oxford handbook of prosocial behavior (pp. 362-375)New York: Oxford University Press.

Agnew, C. R., & VanderDrift, L. E. (2015). Relationship maintenance and dissolution. In M. Mikulincer & P. R. Shaver (Eds.), APA handbook of personality and social psychology: Vol. 3. Interpersonal relations (pp. 581-604)Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Hoffman, A. M., Agnew, C. R., VanderDrift, L. E., & Kulzick, R. (2015). Norms, diplomatic alternatives and the social psychology of war support.Journal of Conflict Resolution, 59, 3-28.

Tan, K., Agnew, C. R., VanderDrift, L. E., & Harvey, S. M. (2015). Committed to us: Predicting relationship closeness following non-marital romantic relationship breakup. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 32, 456-471.

Tan, K., See, H. Y. M., & Agnew, C. R. (2015). Partner’s understanding of affective-cognitive meta-bases predicts relationship quality. Personal Relationships, 22, 524-535.

Warren, J., Harvey, S. M., Washburn, I. J., Sanchez, D. M., Schoenbach, V. J., & Agnew, C. R. (2015). Concurrent sexual partnerships among young heterosexual adults at increased HIV risk: Types and characteristics. Sexually Transmitted Diseases, 42, 180-184.

Besikci, E., Agnew, C. R., & Yildirim, A. (2016). It’s my partner, deal with it: Rejection sensitivity, normative beliefs, and commitment. Personal Relationships, 23, 384-395.

Etcheverry, P. E., & Agnew, C. R. (2016). Predictors of motivation to comply with social referents regarding one’s romantic relationship. Personal Relationships, 23, 214-233. 

Sanchez, D. M., Schoenbach, V. J., Harvey, S. M., Warren, J. T., Adimora, A. A., Poole, C., Leone, P. A., & Agnew, C. R. (2016). Association of perceived partner non-monogamy with prevalent and incident sexual concurrency. Sexually Transmitted Infections, 92, 266-271.

Sanchez, D. M., Schoenbach, V. J., Harvey, S. M., Warren, J. T., Poole, C., Leone, P. A., Adimora, A. A. & Agnew, C. R. (2016). Can young adults accurately report sexual partnership dates? Factors associated with inter-partner and dyad agreement. Sexually Transmitted Diseases, 43, 324-331.

Tan, K., & Agnew, C. R. (2016). Ease of retrieval effects on relationship commitment: The role of future plans. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 42, 161-171.

Wesselmann, E. D., VanderDrift, L. E., & Agnew, C. R. (2016). Religious commitment: An interdependence approach. Psychology of Religion and Spirituality, 8, 35-45.

Agnew, C. R., Besikci, E., & Tan, K. (2017). The Investment Model Scale. In V. Zeigler-Hill & T. K. Shackelford (Eds.), Encyclopedia of personality and human development. New York, NY: Springer. DOI 10.1007/978-3-319-28099-8_43-1. 

Agnew, C. R., Harvey, S. M., VanderDrift, L. E., & Warren, J. (2017). Relational underpinnings of condom use: Findings from the Project on Partner Dynamics. Health Psychology, 36, 713-720.

Goodfriend, W., Agnew, C. R., & Cathey, P. L. (2017). Understanding commitment and partner-serving biases in close relationships. In J. Fitzgerald (Ed.), Foundations for couples’ therapy: Research for the real world (pp. 51-60). New York: Routledge.

VanderDrift, L. E., Agnew, C. R., & Besikci, E. (2017).  Friendship and romance: A need-fulfillment perspective. In M. Hojjat & A. Moyer (Eds.), The psychology of friendship (pp. 106-121). New York: Oxford University Press.

Agnew, C. R., & VanderDrift, L. E. (2018). Commitment processes in personal relationship. In A. L. Vangelisti & D. Perlman (Eds.), The Cambridge handbook of personal relationships, 2ndEdition (pp.437-448). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. 

Girme, Y. U., Agnew, C. R., VanderDrift, L, E., Harvey, S. M., Rholes, W. S., & Simpson, J. A. (2018). The ebbs and flows of attachment: Within-person variation in attachment undermine secure individuals’ relationship wellbeing across time. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 114, 397-421.

Hadden, B. W., Agnew, C. R.., & Tan, K. (2018). Commitment readiness and relationship formation. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 44, 1242-1257.

Harvey, S. M., Oakley, L. P., Washburn, I, & Agnew, C. R. (2018). Contraceptive method choice among young adults: Influence of individual and relationship factors. Journal of Sex Research, 55, 1106-1115.

Tan, K., Arriaga, X. B., & Agnew, C. R. (2018). Running on empty: Measuring psychological dependence in close relationships lacking satisfaction. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 35, 977-998.

Agnew, C. R., & Harman, J. J. (Eds.) (2019). Power in close relationships. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

Agnew, C. R., & Harman, J. J. (2019). Power in close relationships: Theory and contexts. In C. R. Agnew & J. J. Harman (Eds.), Power in close relationships (pp. 1-6). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

Hadden, B. W., Harvey, S. M., Settersten, R. A., Jr., & Agnew, C. R. (2019). What do I call us? The Investment Model of Commitment Processes and changes in relationship categorization. Social Psychological and Personality Science, 10, 235-243.

Kelly, J. R., & Agnew, C. R. (2019).  Behavior and behavior assessment. In K. Deaux & M. Snyder (Eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Personality and Social Psychology, 2ndEdition (pp. 189-208). New York: Oxford University Press.

Arriaga, X. B., Hunt, L. L., & Agnew, C. R. (2019). The time has come: Integrating time and timing into our understanding of close relationships. Psychological Inquiry, 30, 34-38.

Agnew, C. R., Hadden, B. W., & Tan, K. (in press). It’s about time: Readiness, commitment and stability in close relationships. Social Psychological and Personality Science.

Agnew, C. R., Hadden, B. W., & Tan, K. (in press). Relationship receptivity theory: Timing and interdependent relationships. In L. E. VanderDrift, X. B. Arriaga, & C. R. Agnew (Eds.), Interdependence, interaction, and relationships.Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

Hadden, B. W., & Agnew, C. R. (in press). Commitment readiness: Timing, the self, and close relationships. In B. A. Mattingly, K. P. McIntyre, & G. W. Lewandowski (Eds.), Interpersonal relationships and the self-concept.Zurich, Switzerland: Springer.

Tan, K., Agnew, C. R., & Hadden, B. W. (in press). Seeking and ensuring interdependence: Desiring commitment and the strategic initiation and maintenance of close relationships. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin.

VanderDrift, L. E., & Agnew, C. R. (in press). Interdependence perspectives on relationship maintenance. In B. G. Ogolsky & J. K. Monk (Eds.), Relationship maintenance: Theory, process, and context. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

Christopher R. Agnew

Professor, Social Psychology
Professor of Communication (affiliated)
Professor of Political Science (affiilated)
Associate Vice President for Research, Purdue University


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