Skip to main content

William Smith

Professor of Psychology, Emeritus

Smith's interests lie in the areas of self-evaluation, and in interpersonal and intergroup conflict. His research on self-evaluation is primarily concerned with the social comparison of abilities, especially the inference of ability from performance and attribute information, and the relevance of social identity processes for ability comparison. His work on conflict currently addresses issues of conflict in personal relationships, and constitute responses to intergroup negotiation. In attition, Smith conducts archival research on political conflict. He is a member of the Interdisciplinary Program in Social Psychology at Vanderbilt.

Representative Publications

  • Smith, W.P., & Sachs, P. (1997). Social comparison and task prediction: Ability similarity and the use of a proxy. British Journal of Social Psychology, 36, 587-602.
  • Calhoun, P.C., & Smith, W.P. (1999). Integrative bargaining: Does gender make a difference? International Journal of Conflict Management, 10, 201-224.
  • Smith, W.P. & Calhoun, P.S. (2000). Demand/Withdrawal Tactics in Mixed-gender conflicts. Paper presented at Gender and Negotiation panel, Academy of Management meetings, Toronto, August.
  • Smith, W.P. & McCammon, H. (2000). Tactical Exchange in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: Deterrence and Escalation in the West Bank and Gaza Before the Intifada, 1982-1987: A Preliminary Report. Paper presented at meetings of the International Society for Political Psychology, Seattle, Washington, July.
  • Arnkelsson, G.A., & Smith, W.P. (2000). The impact of stable and unstable attributes on ability evaluation in social comparison. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 26, 936-947.
  • Smith, W.P., & Arnkelsson, G.A. (2000). Stability of related attributes and the inference of ability through social comparison. In J. Suls & L. Wheeler (Eds.), Handbook of social comparison: Theory and research. New York: Plenum.
  • Smith, W.P. (2001). Social Comparison in Task Groups. Paper presented at the Groups Preconference of the Society of Experimental Social Psychology, Spokane, WA.