Influential Women in Psychology From the Last 10 Years

Influential Women in Psychology From the Last 10 Years

Our list of influential women in psychology is a testament to the wide variety of career options available in the industry. From parapsychology to psychoanalysis, this list features famous women psychologists who have been highly cited and searched online over the last 10 years.

Top 10 Women in Psychology From the Last 10 Years

  1. Carol Dweck
  2. Susan Blackmore
  3. Tara Brach
  4. Barbara Fredrickson
  5. Angela Duckworth
  6. Anne Treisman
  7. Emőke Bagdy
  8. Julia Kristeva
  9. Gabriele Oettingen
  10. Susan Fiske

According to the American Psychological Association, psychology is the study of the mind and behavior, a discipline that has emerged from within the field of philosophy. Psychology is an extremely diverse and complex field of study, affording the practitioner the opportunity to specialize in numerous areas of research including experimental, cognitive, developmental, and social psychology, among others.

Psychologists can pursue careers in a wide range of fields, including school counseling, substance abuse treatment, special education, or, for those with an advanced degree, clinical practice. Those who do pursue work as clinical psychologists will see an 8% rate of growth in job opportunities between now and 2030. This amounts to the addition of roughly 13,500 jobs in the next decade. Based on current enrollment and employment figures, women may make up a significant proportion of future leaders in the field. While women account for 53% of the psychology workforce today, 74% of early career psychologists and 76% of new psychology doctorates are women.

As women advance in the field, they benefit from strong advocacy, particularly from the Association for Women in Psychology, a diverse feminist community of psychologists and allied professionals invested in the integration of personal, professional, and political power in the service of social justice. Women can also find opportunities for networking and advancement within the American Psychological Association, which is the leading scientific and professional organization for psychology in the United States.

Today, female scholars continue to make major contributions to the advancement of their field. For instance, Leda Cosmides is best known for playing an integral role in the development of evolutionary psychology. Susan Blackmore is a psychologist, researcher and current Visiting Professor at the University of Plymouth, where she works on a wide variety of subjects, including memetics, consciousness, and the scientific treatment of issues in parapsychology. Carol Dweck, the Lewis and Virginia Eaton Professor of Psychology at Stanford University, is best known for her groundbreaking work on mindset.

Did you know that a bachelor’s degree in psychology is a future-proof degree that can qualify you for an extremely wide range of jobs in a variety of high-growth industries? Find out more.

Influential Women in Psychology From the Last 10 Years

  1. #1

    Carol Dweck

    1946 - Present (78 years)
    Carol Susan Dweck is an American psychologist. She holds the Lewis and Virginia Eaton Professorship of Psychology at Stanford University. Dweck is known for her work on motivation and mindset. She was on the faculty at the University of Illinois, Harvard, and Columbia before joining the Stanford University faculty in 2004. She was named an Association for Psychological Science James McKeen Cattell Fellow in 2013, an APS Mentor Awardee in 2019, and an APS William James Fellow in 2020, and has been a member of the National Academy of Sciences since 2012.
  2. #2

    Susan Blackmore

    1951 - Present (73 years)
  3. #3

    Tara Brach

    1953 - Present (71 years)
    Tara Brach is an American psychologist, author, and proponent of Buddhist meditation. She is a guiding teacher and founder of the Insight Meditation Community of Washington, D.C. . Brach also teaches about Buddhist meditation at centers for meditation and yoga in the United States and Europe, including Spirit Rock Meditation Center in Woodacre, California; the Kripalu Center; and the Omega Institute for Holistic Studies.
  4. #4

    Barbara Fredrickson

    1964 - Present (60 years)
  5. #5

    Angela Duckworth

    1970 - Present (54 years)
    Angela Lee Duckworth is an American academic, psychologist, and popular science author. She is the Rosa Lee and Egbert Chang Professor of Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania, where she studies grit and self-control. She is also the Founder and former CEO of Character Lab, a not-for-profit whose mission is to advance the science and practice of character development.
  6. #6

    Anne Treisman

    1935 - 2018 (83 years)
    Anne Marie Treisman was an English psychologist who specialised in cognitive psychology. Treisman researched visual attention, object perception, and memory. One of her most influential ideas is the feature integration theory of attention, first published with Garry Gelade in 1980. Treisman taught at the University of Oxford, University of British Columbia, University of California, Berkeley, and Princeton University. Notable postdoctoral fellows she supervised included Nancy Kanwisher and Nilli Lavie.
  7. #7

    Emőke Bagdy

    1941 - Present (83 years)
    Emőke Bagdy is a Hungarian clinical psychologist, psychotherapist, clinical supervisor, professor emerita at the Károli Gáspár University of the Reformed Church in Hungary , and former director of the National Institute of Psychiatry and Neurology. Her research, books, papers and talks focus on psychotherapy, health psychology and foundational problems of clinical psychology and clinical supervision.
  8. #8

    Julia Kristeva

    1941 - Present (83 years)
    Julia Kristeva is a Bulgarian-French philosopher, literary critic, semiotician, psychoanalyst, feminist, and, most recently, novelist, who has lived in France since the mid-1960s. She has taught at Columbia University, and is now a professor emerita at Université Paris Cité. The author of more than 30 books, including Powers of Horror, Tales of Love, Black Sun: Depression and Melancholia, Proust and the Sense of Time, and the trilogy Female Genius, she has been awarded Commander of the Legion of Honor, Commander of the Order of Merit, the Holberg International Memorial Prize, the Hannah Arend...
  9. #9

    Gabriele Oettingen

    1953 - Present (71 years)
    Princess Gabriele of Oettingen-Oettingen and Oettingen-Spielberg, known professionally as Gabriele Oettingen, is a German academic and psychologist. She is a professor of psychology at New York University and the University of Hamburg. Her research focuses on how people think about the future, and how this impacts cognition, emotion, and behavior.
  10. #10

    Susan Fiske

    1952 - Present (72 years)
  11. #11

    Sue Johnson

    1947 - Present (77 years)
    Sue Johnson is a British clinical psychologist, couples therapist and author living and working in Canada. She is known for her work in the field of psychology on bonding, attachment and adult romantic relationships.
  12. #12

    Ellen Langer

    1947 - Present (77 years)
    Ellen Jane Langer is an American professor of psychology at Harvard University; in 1981, she became the first woman ever to be tenured in psychology at Harvard. Langer studies the illusion of control, decision-making, aging, and mindfulness theory. Her most influential work is Counterclockwise, published in 2009, which answers questions about aging from her research and interest in the particulars of aging across the nation.
  13. #13

    Lisa Feldman Barrett

    1963 - Present (61 years)
  14. #14

    Maria Rita Kehl

    1951 - Present (73 years)
    Maria Rita Kehl, ORB is a Brazilian psychoanalyst, journalist, poet, essayist, cronista and literary critic. In 2010, she won the Jabuti Award in the Education, Psychology and Psychoanalysis category and the Human Rights Award from the Brazilian government in the Media and Human Rights category.
  15. #15

    Sherry Turkle

    1948 - Present (76 years)
  16. #16

    Melanie Joy

    1966 - Present (58 years)
    Melanie Joy is an American social psychologist and author, primarily notable for coining and promulgating the term carnism. She is the founding president of nonprofit advocacy group Beyond Carnism, previously known as Carnism Awareness & Action Network , as well as a former professor of psychology and sociology at the University of Massachusetts Boston. She has published the books Strategic Action for Animals, Why We Love Dogs, Eat Pigs, and Wear Cows and Beyond Beliefs.
  17. #17

    Edna B. Foa

    1937 - Present (87 years)
    Edna Foa is an Israeli professor of clinical psychology at the University of Pennsylvania, where she serves as the director of the Center for the Treatment and Study of Anxiety. Foa is an internationally renowned authority in the field of psychopathology and treatment of anxiety. She approaches the understanding and treatment of mental disorders from a cognitive-behavioral perspective.
  18. #18

    Leda Cosmides

    1957 - Present (67 years)
  19. #19

    Maria Konnikova

    1984 - Present (40 years)
    Maria Konnikova is a Russiann-Americann writer. Konnikova has also worked as a television producer, poker player, and podcaster. She has written three New York Times bestseller list books, including Mastermind: How to Think Like Sherlock Holmes.
  20. #20

    Eleanor Rosch

    1938 - Present (86 years)
  21. #21

    Brenda Milner

    1918 - Present (106 years)
    Brenda Milner is a British-Canadian neuropsychologist who has contributed extensively to the research literature on various topics in the field of clinical neuropsychology. Milner is a professor in the Department of Neurology and Neurosurgery at McGill University and a professor of Psychology at the Montreal Neurological Institute. , she holds more than 25 honorary degrees and she continued to work in her nineties. Her current work covers many aspects of neuropsychology including her lifelong interest in the involvement of the temporal lobes in episodic memory. She is sometimes referred to a...
  22. #22

    Lera Boroditsky

    1976 - Present (48 years)
    Lera Boroditsky is a cognitive scientist and professor in the fields of language and cognition. She is one of the main contributors to the theory of linguistic relativity. She is a Searle Scholar, a McDonnell Scholar, recipient of a National Science Foundation Career award, and an American Psychological Association Distinguished Scientist. She is Professor of Cognitive Science at the University of California, San Diego. She previously served on the faculty at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and at Stanford.
  23. #23

    Laurie R. Santos

    1975 - Present (49 years)
    Laurie Renee Santos is an American cognitive scientist and professor of psychology at Yale University. She is the director of Yale’s Comparative Cognition Laboratory, Director of Yale’s Canine Cognition Lab, and former Head of Yale’s Silliman College. She has been a featured TED speaker and has been listed in Popular Science as one of their “Brilliant Ten” young scientists in 2007 as well as in Time magazine as a “Leading Campus Celebrity” in 2013.
  24. #24

    May-Britt Moser

    1963 - Present (61 years)
    May-Britt Moser is a Norwegian psychologist and neuroscientist, who is a Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology . She and her former husband, Edvard Moser, shared half of the 2014 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, awarded for work concerning the grid cells in the entorhinal cortex, as well as several additional space-representing cell types in the same circuit that make up the positioning system in the brain. Together with Edvard Moser she established the Moser research environment at NTNU, which they lead. Since 2012 she has he...
  25. #25

    Roos Vonk

    1960 - Present (64 years)
    Roosje Vonk is a Dutch professor of social psychology at the Radboud University in Nijmegen author, and motivational speaker. Life and work Vonk studied psychology at Leiden University. She received her PhD in 1990 for her dissertation The cognitive representation of persons: A multidimensional study of Implicit Personality Theory, impression formation, and person judgments. In 1999 she became professor at the Radboud University Nijmegen. In addition to her work at the university, she popularized psychology by means of books, articles, and lectures for the general public.
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Top row, left to right: Patricia Hill Collins, Emmanuelle Charpentier, Malala Yousafzai, Shafi Goldwasser, Jennifer Doudna, Fabiola Gianotti, Michiko Kakutani, Lauren Underwood.

Bottom row, left to right: Fei-Fei Li, Esther Duflo, Kathy Reichs, Nancy Fraser, Brené Brown, Judith Curry, Jill Lepore, Zaha Hadid.

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