Introduction to Ernest Dichter and Motivation Research

Stefan Schwarzkopf

If there ever was a consumer psychologist who inspired the fantasies of millions, it would be Ernest Dichter. Working for five decades as consumer and market researcher, authoring numerous books and articles in popular magazines, and acting as consultant to companies, governments and politicians all over the world, Dichter pioneered the application of Freudian psychoanalysis and depth interviewing to social, political and business-related problems. His work became famous as part of a research school which during the second half of the twentieth century was known as motivation or motivational research.