Primals Research Student Awards

The Primals Project at Penn’s Positive Psychology Center is delighted to announce the Primals Research Student Awards for PhD students and postdoc trainees only. Grants of up to $20,000 will be awarded for the empirical study of primals—also called “primal world beliefs.” Primals are basic perceptions of the world’s general character. A foundational taxonomic effort recently identified 26 hierarchically arranged primals that are stable over time and orthogonal to most demographics, yet strongly correlated to behavior and wellbeing (Clifton et al., 2019). Most variation is explained by three higher-order primals: the beliefs the world is Safe (vs. dangerous), Enticing (vs. dull), and Alive (vs. mechanistic). These awards are intended to encourage original research into the origins and psychological impact of any of the 26 primals. 2-page submissions due May 27, 2022 (details online).