What Drives Us?

In 1985, with the publication of Intrinsic Motivation and Self-Determination in Human Behavior, University of Rochester psychologists Richard Ryan and Edward Deci launched a new theory for understanding what drives humans. Their model maintained that people are motivated by innate psychological needs for competence, autonomy, and relatedness to others – not, as the reigning theories of the day espoused, by inherited instincts or learned responses.

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