#IDIBELLseminars: The motivational background of addictive behaviours

Zsolt Demetrovics

Institute of Psychology, ELTE Eötvös Loránd



Sala de Graus (Aulari) – UB


Drinking motives proved to be proximate predictors of alcohol consumption and alcohol-related problems. Results revealing the importance of drinking motives opened the door to examine the motivational background of other substance use behaviours as well as behavioural addictions. The development of assessment made it possible to examine the role of motives in relation to cannabis use, gambling behaviour, video gaming, pornography use and other potentially addictive behaviours. Not only did these studies reveal the motivational background of these different behaviours, but they also pointed out which of these should be considered significant risk factors in developing problematic behaviours. The paper summarizes the results of the past two decades aiming to understand the motivational background of addictive behaviours and presents the similarities and differences among different addictive disorders. Findings also underline the assumption that motives play an important role in mediating the impact of psychiatric symptoms on behavioural addictions.

Hosted by Susana Jiménez-Murcia – Psychoneurobiology of Eating and Addictive Behaviours Group


Zsolt Demetrovics is a professor of psychology, chair of the Centre of Excellence in Responsible Gaming at the University of Gibraltar, and head of the Addiction Research Group at the ELTE Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest, Hungary. He obtained his MA degrees in psychology and cultural anthropology (ELTE Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest, Hungary) and he received his PhD in clinical and health psychology (addictive behaviours) at the same university. Formerly, he served as dean of the Faculty of Education and Psychology (2014-2021) and director of the Institute of Psychology (2011-2021) at the ELTE Eötvös Loránd University, where he also established the Department of Clinical Psychology & Addiction. He has published over 400 research papers on the epidemiology, assessment and psychological correlates of substance use behaviour and behavioural addictions including gambling, video game use, internet addiction, hypersexual behaviour, exercise addiction, and compulsive buying.  He is president of the International Society for the Study of Behavioral Addictions and funding Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Behavioral Addictions.

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