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Abstract

Personality psychology has long focused on structural trait models, but it can also offer a rich understanding of the dynamics, processes, mechanisms, and functioning of individual differences or entire persons. The field of personality dynamics, which works towards such an understanding, has experienced a renaissance in the last two decades. This review article seeks to act as a primer of that field. It covers its historical roots, summarizes current research strands - along with their theoretical backbones and methodologies - in an accessible way, and sketches some considerations for the future. In doing so, we introduce relevant concepts, give an overview of different topics and phenomena subsumed under the broad umbrella term 'dynamics', and highlight the interdisciplinarity as well as applied relevance of the field. We hope this article can serve as a useful overview for scholars within and outside of personality psychology who are interested in the dynamic nature of human behaviour and experience. © 2020 The Authors. British Journal of Psychology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of British Psychological Society.

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