About Reuven Bar-On

About Reuven Bar-On

Personal background:

Reuven Bar-On was born in California in 1944. In addition to the United States, he has lived in Canada, Italy and South Africa as well as in Israel where he has resided most of his life. He holds both American and Israeli citizenship. He is fully bilingual in English and Hebrew; and he would like to eventually become fluent in Arabic, Spanish, Italian, French and German like his paternal grandfather. He is married, the father of three and the grandfather of six. He is a retired Major from the IDF, and has worked as a clinical and organizational psychologist for both government and private organizations for four decades.

Academic background and professional affiliations:

Upon completing his BA and MA in the United States, he continued to study psychology in South Africa at Rhodes University and received his PhD in 1988. He received membership in the American Psychological Association and in the Israeli Psychological Association, and is also a licensed clinical psychologist and clinical supervisor. He has held an adjunct professorship in the Faculty of Education at the University of Pretoria in South Africa and an adjunct faculty appointment in the School of Medicine at the University of Texas Medical Branch since 2003. For his contribution to the field of emotional intelligence, Dr. Bar-On was accepted as a Fellow in the Royal Academy of the Arts (UK). He was accepted into the Consortium for Research on Emotional Intelligence in Organizations (US) as the first non- founding member. Dr. Bar-On is affiliated with the Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning in Chicago and with the National School Climate Center in New York where he is a senior advisor on emotional and social intelligence. Additionally, he is a senior advisor on emotional intelligence to Best Practice Institute (US). He also holds membership in the Association for Coaching (UK), Association of Business Psychologists (UK) and in the Global Mastermind Group (US) which is a multinational think-tank for advancing leadership and team development.

Professional expertise and experience:

In addition to his work in the field of clinical psychology from 1972, Dr. Bar-On has been involved in conceptualizing, researching and applying emotional intelligence since 1980 and is acknowledged as one of the leading theorists, researchers and practitioners in this field. The “Bar-On model of emotional intelligence” is described, in the Encyclopedia of Applied Psychology, as one of three leading approaches to this construct. He coined the term “EQ” (“Emotional Quotient”) in 1985 to describe his approach to assessing emotional and social competence. He created the Bar-On Emotional Quotient Inventory (the EQ-i™), which is the first test of emotional intelligence to be published by a psychological test publisher and peer-reviewed in the Buros Mental Measurement Yearbook. The EQ-i has been translated into more than 30 languages and passed the one million mark worldwide, within five years after it was published, making it the most popularly-used measure of emotional intelligence. Together with Dr. James Parker, he published the Bar-On EQ-i:YV which is the first commercially available test designed to assess emotionally and socially intelligent behavior in children and adolescents; in addition to being favorably reviewed in the Buros Mental Measurement Yearbook, the EQ-i:YV has been selected by psychometricians at the University of Oxford as the emotional intelligence test of choice for children and recommended for use in schools throughout the United Kingdom. Together with another colleague, Dr. Richard Handley, he published the Bar-On EQ-360 and the Bar-On EQ-interview. With Dr. Parker, he also co-edited the Handbook of Emotional Intelligence (2000), which is one of the first textbooks on this topic to be published. Together with Drs. Kobus Maree and Maurice Elias, he co-edited an additional book in this area titled Educating People to Be Emotionally Intelligent (2007). Based on a training manual he wrote with Dr. Handley, Optimizing People, he co-developed the first web-based training program designed to improve emotional intelligence competencies and skills.

Dr. Bar-On has been involved in numerous projects related to the study and application of emotional intelligence for more than three decades. An example includes a three-year study in the Israeli Defense Forces that empirically demonstrated the impact of emotional intelligence on general occupational performance as well as its ability to predict combat performance and command leadership. Together with Dr. Marian Ruderman at the Center for Creative Leadership (US), he published the findings of an extensive research project conducted at CCL which confirms the ability of emotional and social intelligence to predict successful corporate leadership. He has also been involved in a 25-year longitudinal study of 23,000 youth to determine the inter-relationship between emotional intelligence and biomedical, cognitive, developmental and educational factors; this study, which is being conducted by Human Resources and Skills Development Canada, represents the first longitudinal study of emotional intelligence and is expected to shed light on how this construct develops, what affects it and what is affected by it. He was also invited to join researchers at the University of Pretoria (SA) in collaboration with a research team in the Pediatric Department at the Yale School of Medicine (US), who have investigated the impact of emotional and social intelligence on resiliency among children of AIDS patients in Africa. Additionally, he has been involved in research projects examining the neurological substrate of emotional and social intelligence as well as its impact on physical and psychological disorders. Together with a research team headed by Prof. Antonio Damasio in the College of Medicine at the University of Iowa (US), Dr. Bar-On published the first peer-reviewed paper on the neurological basis of emotional and social intelligence.

Dr. Bar-On founded Bar-On Test Developers and Bar-On Consulting. He has been doing research-based consultation for public and private organizations worldwide. Dr. Bar-On developed what he refers to as Star Performer Profiling, which involves creating statistical models that are used in hiring, training and promoting high performing employees who are capable of increasing overall organizational effectiveness, productivity and profitability. This process has helped organizations save and/or make hundreds of millions of dollars since 1996.

This is what Daniel Goleman, the author of Emotional Intelligence, said about Reuven Bar-On’s contribution to emotional intelligence: “Your work is leading the way in moving this field forward.”

In addition to his extensive work in the field of emotional intelligence, Dr. Bar-On co- designed a handheld device for NASA that monitors the cognitive and neurological functioning of astronauts aboard space stations which will hopefully be used in extended space travel. He has more recently developed a web-based interactive program designed to evaluate prenatal anxiety and enhance adaptation to pregnancy to help expectant mothers have a less stressful, healthier and more pleasant pregnancy. In collaboration with Dr. Michael Rock, he is co-authored the Bar-On & Rock Spiritual Quotient Inventory™ (SQ-i™), designed to assess spiritual development and the quest of meaning in life. Additionally, he is also collaborating with a London-based global HR consultancy in developing a psychometric instrument designed to detect high risk for “derailment” in senior executives and corporate leaders.

Dr. Bar-On’s work has been described in encyclopedias, books and professional journals as well as in numerous newspaper, radio and television interviews around the world. He has 50 publications in the area of emotional intelligence and has delivered more than 25 presentations at professional conferences held in over 10 countries. His work is cited in more than 4,800 articles, books, theses and dissertations. On an ongoing basis, Dr. Bar-On reviews manuscripts related to emotional and social intelligence for a number of peer-reviewed journals and serves on the editorial boards of four journals.

Some of the more well-known users of products and services developed by Dr. Reuven Bar-On:

American Express



Bank of Montreal

Baylor College of Medicine

Bethlehem Steel


Bombardier Aerospace


Canadian Centre for Management Development

Canadian Forces


Center for Creative Leadership

Chase Manhattan Bank



Delta Systems

EL AL Airlines

Fannie Mae

Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)

Fidelity Investments

Harvard Medical School

Human Resources and Skills Development Canada


Inter-American Development Bank

Irish Defense Forces

Irish Management Institute

Israeli Defense Forces

Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Johnson & Johnson

Kaiser Permanente


Lucent Technologies

Maritime Life



New York Times

New York University



Ramada Plaza Hotels

Royal Canadian Mounted Police



Stockholm School of Economics

Sun Microsystems


University of British Columbia

University of Hong Kong

University of Pretoria

University of Texas Medical Branch

US Armed Forces


Walter Reed Medical Center

Wells Fargo Bank

World Bank

World Health Organization

Yale School of Medicine

Copyright 2013-2023 Reuven Bar-On. All rights reserved. | Disclaimer