ZIFO - Achievement Goals for Research: In-depth Studies


The ZIFO project (which stands for ‘Zielorientierungen von Forschenden’ in German, or ‘Goal Orientations of Researchers’ in English) is a motivational psychology project funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG). It is currently being carried out by a collaborating team of researchers from the University of Augsburg and the University of Mannheim. The main goal of the research project is to gain in-depth knowledge about the motivation of scientists. In particular, the developmental processes of achievement goals across career stages, their relevance for professionalization, and the interplay of goals in the adaptation to the scientific professional field will be examined. For detailed information, check out the project summary below!



We aim to provide new knowledge and insights concerning the impact of faculty members’ achievement goals within the research domain. To do this, we build upon the preceding project in which we clarified the structure, separability, and relevance of faculty members’ achievement goals for their professional behaviors in the teaching domain. In the proposed project, we plan to (1) comprehensively elucidate developmental processes of achievement goals in the work context, (2) study the relevance of achievement goals for professionalization at work, dealing with setbacks, and successfully mastering relevant career steps, and (3) investigate the interplay between achievement goals when adapting to the work context.

Project information

Start date: 01.10.2022


End date: 30.09.2023


Duration: 3 years


Research funding: DFG (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft)


Local project responsibility: PD Dr. Martin Daumiller & Prof. Dr. Markus Dresel


Local researchers:

  • PD Dr. Martin Daumiller
  • Charlotte Seidel

Participating researchers / cooperations:

  • Prof. Dr. Oliver Dickhäuser
  • Dr. Stefan Janke
  • TBD
Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft


Assistant Professor/Senior Lecturer