Archive for “June, 2015”

Lego range of emotions

#GeekReads: 4 Quick Reads + 1 Watch that Made Us Smarter

In this week’s #GeekReads: trustworthy faces; Inside Out‘s insights into emotional psychology; motivations for violence; psychological roots of partisanship; the effect of gray matter density on empathy.

Written on your face. Jonathan Freeman, director of NYU’s Social Cognitive & Neural Sciences Lab, discusses how our unconscious biases can impact our visual perception of other people. From James Devitt via Futurity.

Animated feelings. Pixar’s new film Inside Out is changing the way kids, and adults, name and discuss their emotions. From Ian Phillips via Business Insider

History of violence. In one author’s search to find what motivates violence, he discovers a unifying theme of moral sentiments aimed at regulating social relationships. From Tage Rai via Aeon.

Walking the party line. Research shows that only party supporters who are affectively and psychologically engaged show evidence of partisan bias. From Aarhus University via Psy Post.

Gray matter matters. Differences in brain structure may affect the types of situations we empathize with most. From Monica Joshi via Big Think.


Tweet us your #GeekReads at @w0nderlab.

Image: flickr/Danielito311 CC BY NC 2.0

Storm Trooper piggy bank

#GeekReads: 5 Quick Reads that Made Us Smarter

In this week’s #GeekReads: geeking out over charitable giving; testosterone’s effect on the amygdala; the intrigue of the unknown; diving deeper into community data; anxiety’s stifling effect on empathy.

Generosity for nerds. Is it possible to scientifically calculate the maximum good of a charitable donation? From Derek Thompson via The Atlantic.

Bring it on. Testosterone makes approaching a social threat easier by activating the amygdala, but context is everything. From Radbound University via PsyPost.

Embrace the unknown. Jason Gots praises that which can’t be fully known in art, science, and modern life. Via Big Think.

Beyond the data. Having awareness of built-in biases and devising new approaches can improve the effectiveness of community evaluations. From Kimberley Sims via Stanford Social Innovation Review

You feel me? Research suggests that anxiety impairs people’s capacity to put themselves in someone else’s shoes. From Daniel Yudkin via Scientific American


Tweet us your #GeekReads at @w0nderlab.

Image: flickr/Kristina Alexanderson, CC BY NC-ND 2.0

Dog begging for a treat

#GeekReads: 4 Quick Reads + 1 Watch that Made Us Smarter

In this week’s #GeekReads: anticipating temptation; minimizing bias blind spots; building authentic personal brands; the radical power of outrospection; how powerful people perceive injustice.

Lead us not into temptation. Research has found that anticipating temptation to act unethically may increase honest decision-making. From Natalie Shoemaker via Big Think.

Bias blind spot. Believing that you are less biased than the average person can negatively affect the quality of your decision-making. From Carnegie Mellon University via PsyPost.

Personal brand. While it’s easy to get caught up in what others want us to be, sometimes we need to be reminded to just be ourselves. From Molly Reynolds via Inc.

Outrospection. Roman Krznaric discusses empathy’s ability expand your moral universe, encourage creative thinking and inspire radical social change. From Roman Krznaric via Aeon.

That’s not fair. New research finds people who perceive themselves as powerful are faster to detect injustice, but only when they are the victims. From Tom Jacobs via Pacific Standard.


Tweet us your #GeekReads at @w0nderlab.

Image: flickr/vanderlaan.fotografeert, CC BY SA 2.0

Brainy Smurf and Pinky and the Brain face-off

#GeekReads: 4 Quick Reads + 1 Watch that Made Us Smarter

In this week’s #GeekReads: unconscious stereotyping; downplaying decision-making anxiety; increasing empathy with Harry Potter; the trap of a trying to hire a “cultural fit”; unlearning bias in our sleep.

Rapid categorization. Dr. Heidi Grant explains that just knowing a stereotype, without even believing in it, can be enough to influence you. From Heidi Halvorson via Big Think.

Emotional gatekeeper. Researchers have discovered a neural circuit that may help us work through emotional cost-benefit decisions. From Massachusetts Institute of Technology via PsyPost.

Polyjuice potion. Walking in Harry Potter’s shoes may help children develop greater empathy and tolerance in the Muggle world. From Danny Lewis via Smithsonian.

Cultural fit. While a cultural fit seems important when considering a new hire, studies show that diverse groups tend to function more effectively than homogeneous competitors. From Rachel Sugar via Business Insider.

Sleep it off. A new study finds that people can unlearn prejudiced assumptions during sleep. From Tom Jacobs via Pacific Standard.


Tweet us your #GeekReads at @w0nderlab.

Image: flickr/JDHancock, CC BY 2.0

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