Robert J. Waldinger

  (Redirected from The Study of Adult Development)

Robert J. Waldinger (born 1951) is an American psychiatrist and Professor at Harvard Medical School. He is known for a TED talk about his findings from the Grant Study, a longitudinal study on adult happiness that's based at Harvard and has been running continuously since 1938.[1]

Robert J. Waldinger
Alma materHarvard College, Harvard Medical School
Known forGrant Study, TED Talk
Scientific career
FieldsPsychiatry, Psychodynamic Therapy
InstitutionsMassachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School and Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute

Since 2005, Waldinger has been Director of the Study of Adult Development at Harvard University, a longitudinal study that has tracked the health and mental well-being of a group of 724 American men for more than 80 years.[2] Waldinger is also a faculty member in the adult training program at the Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute.[3]

He is the Director of the Center for Psychodynamic Therapy and Research at Massachusetts General Hospital. He is a Zen priest as well.[4] After the viral success of his TED talk, he took a 3-week silent retreat; Waldinger explains "the Zen tradition holds that contemplation helps us stay grounded in what’s most important in life."[5]

He also is Founder and Executive Director of the Lifespan Research Foundation,[6] which conducts and translates research, and disseminates information and programs that promote adaptive adult development.  

Waldinger graduated summa cum laude from Harvard College in 1973.[citation needed] He completed his M.D. at Harvard Medical School in 1978.[citation needed]


  1. ^ "Over nearly 80 years, Harvard study has been showing how to live a healthy and happy life". Harvard Gazette. 2017-04-11. Retrieved 2020-02-26.
  2. ^ "Harvard Second Generation Study". Harvard Second Generation Study. Retrieved 26 April 2019.
  3. ^ "Adult Program Faculty". Retrieved 26 April 2019.
  4. ^ Waldinger, Robert. "Robert Waldinger - Speaker - TED". Retrieved 26 April 2019.
  5. ^ "Why I'm Going on a Silent Retreat at a Critical Time of My Career". Robert Waldinger. 1 January 2016.
  6. ^ "About Us". Lifespan Research Foundation. Retrieved 2020-02-26.