Nock’s research is aimed at advancing the understanding why people behave in ways that are harmful to themselves, with an emphasis on suicide and other forms of self-harm. His research is multi-disciplinary in nature and uses a range of methodological approaches (e.g., epidemiologic surveys, laboratory-based experiments, and clinic-based studies) to better understand how these behaviors develop, how to predict them, and how to prevent their occurrence. This work is funded by grants from the National Institutes of Health and several private foundations, has been published in over 100 scientific papers and book chapters. Nock’s work has been recognized through the receipt of four early career awards from the American Psychological Association, the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies, and the American Association of Suicidology; and in 2011 he was named a MacArthur Fellow. In addition to conducting research, Nock has been a consultant/scientific advisor to the National Institutes of Health, the World Health Organization’s World Mental Health Survey Initiative, the American Psychological Association, and the American Psychiatric Association DSM-V Childhood and Adolescent Disorder Work Group. At Harvard, Professor Nock teaches courses on statistics, research methods, self-destructive behaviors, developmental psychopathology, and cultural diversity—for which he has received several teaching awards including the Roslyn Abramson Teaching Award and the Petra Shattuck Prize.
Nock was born and raised in New Jersey. He received a bachelor's degree from Boston University, two master's degrees and a PhD in psychology from Yale University, and completed a clinical psychology internship at Bellevue Hospital Center and NYU Child Study Center. He currently is a Professor of Psychology and Director of the Laboratory for Clinical and Developmental Research in the Department of Psychology at Harvard University.
- "Matthew Nock — MacArthur Foundation". John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.
- Shari Roan, "MacArthur fellow will focus on suicide prevention", LA Times, September 20, 2011, http://articles.latimes.com/2011/sep/20/news/la-heb-macarthur-suicide-20110920
- Felicia R Lee, "MacArthur Foundation Selects 22 ‘Geniuses’", NY Times, September 20, 2011, http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/20/arts/macarthur-foundation-announces-winners-of-genius-awards.html