Laura L. Carstensen, Ph.D. is Professor of Psychology and the Fairleigh S. Dickinson Jr. Professor in Public Policy at Stanford University, where she is also the founding director of the Stanford Center on Longevity, which explores innovative ways to solve the problems of people over 50 while improving the well-being of people of all ages. She is best known in academia for socioemotional selectivity theory, a life-span theory of motivation, and with her students and colleagues, has published more than 150 articles on life-span development. Her research has been supported by the National Institute on Aging for more than 20 years and she is currently supported by a MERIT Award.
In 2011, she authored A Long Bright Future: Happiness, Health, and Financial Security in an Age of Increased Longevity. She is a member of the MacArthur Foundation’s Research Network on an Aging Society and currently serves on the National Advisory Council on Aging to NIA. She has won numerous awards, including the Kleemeier Award and Distinguished Mentorship Award from the Gerontological Society of America, as well as a Guggenheim Fellowship. She received a BS from the University of Rochester and PhD in clinical psychology from West Virginia University.