Professor of Psychology Tom Gilovch joins Igor and Charles to discuss the perils of black-and-white thinking, the evolving data on the hot hand phenomenon, the science of regret, why foxes are wiser than hedgehogs, and the freedom that comes from learning that we are of less interest to other people than we think. Igor considers the limits of psychological nudging in tackling society’s structural problems, Tom shares the perspective that leads him to be so unrelentingly joyful, and Charles learns that even scientists have to work hard to avoid being typecast. Click here to listen to episode 48.
ON WISDOM Podcast – Episode 43: Invisible to Ourselves: A Life of a Psychological Scientist (with Richard Nisbett)
Professor of Social Psychology Richard Nisbett joins Igor and Charles to discuss a life lived on the cutting edge of behavioral sciences in the second part of the 20th Century. He shares tales from his groundbreaking research into our faulty mindware, discussing various biases, cultural differences in cognitive processes, our inability to directly observe our mental processes, and why job interviews are not only unhelpful but potentially harmful to our ability to hire the best person for the job. Igor is keen to learn about the human beings behind some of the 20th Century’s academic idols in social psychology like Daniel Kahneman, Amos Tversky and Lee Ross, Richard explains why important work and interesting work are not necessarily the same thing, and Charles struggles to make sense of when we do and don’t intervene to help strangers in peril. Click here to listen to episode 43.
ON WISDOM Podcast – World After Covid series: Wisdom for Now (Part II) – What’s important, Living in the moment, Social connectedness, and Shared humanity
What one piece of wisdom is important to give to people now to help them make it through the pandemic? Igor and Charles share and discuss responses given to this critical question by 57 of the world’s leading behavioral and social scientists, collected as part of the World After Covid project. The conversation covers themes of what’s important, living in the moment, social connectedness, and shared humanity in the midst of the pandemic. Click here to listen.
ON WISDOM Podcast – World After Covid series: Wisdom for Now (Part I) – Agency and Control, Long-term Orientation, Social Connectedness, Solidarity, and Perspective-taking
What one piece of wisdom is important to give to people now to help them make it through the pandemic? Igor and Charles share and discuss responses given to this critical question by 57 of the world’s leading behavioral and social scientists, collected as part of the World After Covid project. The conversation covers themes of agency and control, long-term orientation, social connectedness, solidarity, and perspective-taking in the midst of the pandemic. Click here to listen.
Evidence-Based Wisdom and University of California San Diego’s Center for Healthy Aging recently worked together to produce a companion animation for the paper The New Science of Practical Wisdom, published by Johns Hopkins University Press. The animation covers how wisdom is defined and measured in the laboratory, the biology of wisdom, its dynamic relationship with culture, wisdom and aging, wisdom and health, and how we might build wiser societies. Click here to watch.
ON WISDOM Podcast – Episode 31: The Meaning of Wisdom Before and During the Pandemic (with Ricca Edmondson)
Professor of Political Science and Sociology Ricca Edmondson joins Igor and Charles to discuss novel ethnographic approaches to the study of wisdom, the significance of Irish funeral rituals, new lessons from old Trojan horses, and the value of framing wisdom as a social construction. Originally recorded at the start of the pandemic, Ricca returned for a retrospective at the close of the episode, to share her opinions on the meaning of wisdom in these rapidly changing times, and in our future post-pandemic society. Igor muses about big and small wisdom, and Charles asks Ricca about the world after the pandemic. Click here to listen to episode 31.
ON WISDOM Podcast – Episode 30: Emotions, Attention, and Decision Making in the Aging Brain (with Mara Mather)
Professor of Gerontology and Psychology at the University of Southern California Mara Mather joins Igor and Charles to discuss the neuroscience of emotional aging, the role of the locus coeruleus in memory and attention, emotion-induced blindness, and the parallels between Cardiovascular disease and Alzheimer’s disease. Igor digs into the different roles of culture and the lack of good longitudinal studies of aging, Mara reveals how intense emotions can sharpen some aspects of our memories of an event while blunting others, and Charles learns that he and many others may be on the Alzheimer’s spectrum. Click here to listen to episode 30.
USCD’s Professor of Psychiatry Dilip Jeste, recently gathered a team of leading academics – including neurologists, psychiatrists, anthropologists, psychologists, moral philosophers, and epidemiologists – to produce a paper entitled The New Science of Practical Wisdom. The aim of the joint paper was to introduce the science of wisdom research to the broader academic community. Evidence-Based Wisdom was invited to help write the paper, and the piece has now been published by Johns Hopkins University Press in the journal Perspectives in Biology and Medicine.
ON WISDOM Podcast – Episode 29: Charting Pandemic Waters: A Common Wisdom Model for Uncertain Times (with Howard Nusbaum)
Director of the Chicago Center for Practical Wisdom and Stella M. Rowley Professor of Psychology at the University of Chicago Howard Nusbaum joins Igor and Charles to discuss the recently assembled Toronto Wisdom Task Force and the resulting Common Wisdom Model, meta-cognition, the thorny issue of moral-grounding, and sage advice regarding how to measure wisdom in the lab. Igor stresses the importance of building solid theoretical foundations for the field in the context of the pandemic, Howard reflects on the viability of evil wisdom, and Charles learns that we had better pay close attention today to the values we program into the decision-making robots of tomorrow. Click here to listen to Episode 29
Distinguished Professor and Vice Chair of Psychology at the University of California, Riverside Sonja Lyubomirsky joins Igor and Charles to discuss the key components of happiness, lessons from 9-11, ‘happiness-intervention fit’, Mother Teresa’s dark side, and the unexpected psychological impact of the global pandemic to date. Click here to listen to Episode 28.
The Evidence-based Wisdom Graphics Series is a new collection of infographics highlighting key findings from the field of wisdom research: Jeste’s family model of the wise brain, the wisdom research timeline, the Berlin Wisdom Paradigm, the 6 components of wisdom, current wisdom scales … Click here to find out more.
Hospitality maverick and Airbnb Strategic Advisor Chip Conley joins Igor and Charles to discuss the U-Curve of happiness, the surprises and challenges of mentoring billionaire CEOs and State Governors, the potential of intergenerational housing, the emergence of a new generation of wisdom workers, and his new project to build the world’s first midlife wisdom school – The Modern Elder Academy. Click here to listen to Episode 27.
Professor of Developmental Psychology at Alpen-Adria University Klagenfurt and one of today’s leading wisdom scientists Judith Glück joins Igor and Charles to discuss the MORE Model of Life Experience, different ways of reflecting on personal experiences, collaborative doctors, compassionate teachers, and pervasive foolishness across the entire political spectrum. Click here to listen to Episode 26.
ON WISDOM Podcast – Episode 25: ‘This is Basically a Revolution’: Self-Knowledge & The Battle for Better Science (with Simine Vazire)
UC Davis Associate Professor of Psychology and co-founder of The Society for the Improvement of Psychological Science Simine Vazire joins Igor and Charles to discuss the thorny complexity of seeking reliable knowledge about the world and about ourselves, the perils of being a whistleblower in the competitive world of modern science, and the on-going scientific credibility revolution. Click here to listen to Episode 25.
Is Behavioral Economics misguided? Might irrational behavior be a consequence of focusing on reasonableness instead? Charles and Igor kick of the new decade by diving into a messy mix of behavioral economics, nudges, moral philosophy and legal studies, to examine what standards guide people’s decisions. Click here to listen to Episode 24.
ON WISDOM Podcast – Episode 23: Antifragility, Gut Feelings, and the Myth of Pure Evil (with Jonathan Haidt)
Professor of Psychology Jonathan Haidt joins Igor and Charles to discuss the three great untruths of modern life, the ‘great awokening,’ rising violence on US university campuses, and critically, what the adoption of such popular, but unwise, ideas might be doing to a rising generation of young adults. Click here to listen to Episode 23.
ON WISDOM Podcast – Episode 22: The Epistemic Tightrope: Walking The Line of Doubt (with Scott Lilienfeld)
Professor of Psychology Scott Lilienfeld joins Igor and Charles to discuss evidence-based practice in psychotherapy, the importance of doubting, clinical psychology’s dirty little secret, confirmation bias, how science really works, and why people just can’t let go of the idea that a full moon triggers werewolf-style behaviour. Click here to listen to Episode 22.
The most intriguing question of all in the field of wisdom research surely has to be: ‘Can we intentionally develop wisdom?’ This animation outlines 3 surprising short-term wisdom-enhancing strategies developed in the research laboratory. And the long-term? Research suggests there are a number of potential paths to developing wisdom over the life course… Click here to watch
Professor of Philosophy Mark Alfano joins Igor and Charles to discuss the importance of ‘intellectual humility’ when seeking a more accurate grasp of reality, the perils of poorly designed virtue education programmes, and the training of machine-learning algorithms to mine our digital footprints for signs of virtuous behaviour. Click here to listen to Episode 21.
Professor of Human Development at Cornell University and former president of the American Psychological Association, Robert Sternberg is one of the founding fathers of the field of wisdom research and one of its most outspoken advocates. He talks to evidencebasedwisdom about intelligent fools, inequality and getting serious about wisdom in education. Click here to read more.
Professor of Psychology at UC Berkeley and faculty director of the Greater Good Science Center Dacher Keltner joins Igor and Charles to discuss why Canadians feel differently about awe than the Chinese, how to take an awe-walk, and the alarmingly fine line between disgust and desire. Click here to listen to Episode 20.
Professor of Psychology Adam Grant joins Igor & Charles to discuss cultures of non-conformity and giving in the workplace, the perils of cognitive entrenchment, Nobel-prize-winning dancers, and why moral arguments still trump appeals to the bottom-line in the boardroom. Click here to listen to Episode 19.
Can wisdom really be measured? This animation looks at how scientists wrangle with the challenges inherent in ‘scoring’ for wisdom. Which wisdom scales have been shown to be the most robust and what potential benefits follow from being able to successfully identify wise individuals? Click here to watch.
ON WISDOM Podcast – Episode 18: The End of the World is Nigh – Polarised Tribes, Passionate Words, and the Partisan Brain (with Jay Van Bavel)
Associate Professor Of Psychology Jay Van Bavel joins Igor & Charles to discuss political polarisation, the partisan brain, the inexorable rise of superheroes in dark times, the misperceptions of polarisation levels, and how to reach out to other tribes. Click here to listen to Episode 18.
In the 1980s one pioneering group of psychologists conceived of wisdom as an expertise like any other, but expertise in the fundamental pragmatics of life. Click here to read the full post.
ON WISDOM Podcast – Episode 17: The Metaphysics of Email & The Perils of Productivity (with Oliver Burkeman)
Guardian journalist and author Oliver Burkeman joins Igor & Charles to discuss the false promises at the heart of productivity culture, the importance of embracing uncertainty and limitations, Nietzche’s suspicions about our beloved busyness, Keynes’ concerns about excess leisure, the Jevons paradox, and what the London underground can teach us about the Stoics. Click here to listen to Episode 17.
EBW Article: Are Friends the Enemies of Wise Choices? The Hidden Factors Influencing Our Most Important Decisions
The new EBW article Are Friends the Enemies of Wise Choices? The Hidden Factors Influencing Our Most Important Decisions is published by Intentional Insights. The article explores the surprising role of social relationships in wise decision-making. Click here to read the full article. Also published on The Huffington Post and Psychology Today.
Science Journalist David Robson joins Igor & Charles to discuss what’s missing from our picture of what it means to be smart, covering intelligence traps, Terman’s Termites, the Monte Carlo fallacy, Damasio’s Somatic Marker hypothesis, the competitive humility of the start-up culture, and the ‘brutal pessimism’ baked in to the dark history of the Intelligence test. Click here to listen to Episode 16.
How do you reliably measure wisdom? What’s happening in the brain when we take wise decisions? Professor of Psychiatry Dilip Jeste has been working hard to pull these different strands of measurement research together to give us the SD-WISE – a bold new wisdom scale with great potential and a whole new way of thinking about wisdom in the human brain. Click here to read the full dispatch.
Assistant Professor of Behavioural Science Gordon Pennycook joins Igor & Charles to discuss the cognitive reflection test, the random Deepak Chopra quote generator, the Ig Nobel prize, motivated reasoning, climate change beliefs, academic turf wars among dual process theorists, and how to stop yourself from compulsively retweeting fake news.. Click here to listen to Episode 15.
Director of The Center for Practical Wisdom and Professor of Psychology at the University of Chicago Howard Nusbaum talks to evidencebasedwisdom about wise decision-making, the relationship between ballet and wisdom, the importance of attention, and the surprising role of the supreme court in the new field of wisdom research. Click here to read the full interview.
Professor of psychology Michele Gelfand joins Igor & Charles to discuss the role of threat in ‘tight vs loose’ societies, how wise leaders dynamically calibrate the tightness or looseness of organisations, the goldilocks principle and transgressive hand puppets. Click here to listen to Episode 14.
What good is wisdom anyway? Wisdom researcher Monika Ardelt’s latest research on wisdom and hardship suggests an intriguing answer to this valid question. Wisdom may in fact be a resource to support that inevitable challenge that awaits us all – Aging and dying well. Click here to read the full dispatch.
Igor and Charles tinker with the nuts and bolts of a speculative wisdom curriculum, discussing the stark limits of formal ethics classes, future technological tools to help identify when wise reasoning is necessary, and the counterproductive impact of presenting wise figures out of context. Click here to listen to Episode 13.
The concept of the white-haired, bearded ‘wise aged sage’, is very much part of our popular culture. But what does the science of wisdom research tell us? Does older really mean wiser? Click here to read the full post.
Director of the Stanford Center on Longevity Professor Laura Carstensen joins Igor & Charles to discuss the implications and opportunities of recent extraordinary gains in life expectancy, the socio-emotional selectivity theory, the positivity effect, and how our sense of ‘time-left’ can impact our wisdom, behaviour and priorities. Click here to listen to Episode 12.
This August, a select group of the world’s leading behavioural scientists gathered in Chicago for the Center for Practical Wisdom Research Forum 2017. EBW went to Chicago with microphone it hand, to pick the brains of these wise experts, and to hit the city streets to learn what the people of Chicago have to tell us about living wisely in the modern world. Click here to listen.
Professor of Psychology Barry Schwartz joins Igor & Charles to discuss discuss how Aristotle’s Practical Wisdom applies in the 21st Century, the reasons why we work, idea technology, the unintended consequences of rules-based systems, and the moral dangers and limits of incentives. Click here to listen to Episode 11.
Can speaking in a foreign language change the choices we make? According to the latest research, using a foreign language may actually result in wiser reasoning. Click here to read the full dispatch.
Director of UCSF’s Emotion, Health and Psychophysiology Lab Wendy Berry Mendes joins Igor & Charles to discuss the interaction between the psychological and physiological processes underpinning wise behaviour, exploring ‘challenge vs threat’ stress responses, vagal flexibility, affect contagion, & the physiology of social sensitivity & good judgement. Click here to listen to Episode 10.
Philosopher Valerie Tiberius joins Igor and Charles to discuss positive illusions, values integration, bearing our own reflective survey, and the perils of excessive introspection. Can philosophers and psychologists work together to guide us towards living wisely? In pursuing the good life, can too much reflection be dangerous? Click here to listen to Episode 9.
What can we actually do to become wiser? Recent research by a team at the University of Chicago explored the impact that a number of physical and mental practices might have on wisdom. The results are both surprising and exciting. Click here to read the full dispatch.
Yale psychologist Paul Bloom joins Igor and Charles on the podcast for a walk on the dark side, exploring the treacherous hidden terrain of empathy, harmless torturers, aggregate cruelty and third-party punishment. Might some forms of empathy actually be dangerous for society, biasing preferences towards those that look like us, or even those we find attractive? Click here to listen to Episode 8.
Developmental Psychologist Nic Weststrate joins Igor and Charles on the podcast to discuss exploratory and redemptive processing, the complex motivations behind Holocaust survivors’ testimonies, the Stonewall riots as the mythical origin story of the Gay Liberation movement, and the real reasons we tell stories. Click here to listen to Episode 7.
Before wisdom can be studied, it has to be defined. This animation looks at the three dominant models of wisdom to emerge from the first 30 years of research. And can a 2013 analysis of 24 definitions reveal just 6 essential sub-components of wisdom? Click here to watch.
Social Psychologist Michael Kraus joins Igor and Charles on the podcast to discuss inequality blindness, accuracy of class signalling, the revealing impact of class on wise reasoning, implications of new marshmallow-based research, and the dark underbelly of the American dream. Click here to listen to Episode 6.
Sternberg’s Balance Theory of Wisdom is one of the most celebrated models of wisdom to emerge from the field of psychology. It’s practical, it’s clear and it’s all about doing the right thing. Click here to read the full post.
Assistant Professor of Psychology Eranda Jayawickreme joins Igor and Charles on the podcast to discuss the ‘wise-person/wise situation’ debate, recent controversy over the Stanford Prison Experiment, bad apples vs bad barrels and how to avoid epic failures of virtue. Click here to listen to Episode 5.
Professor of Developmental Psychology at Alpen-Adria University Klagenfurt, Austria, Judith Glück talks to evidencebasedwisdom about her MORE life experience model of wisdom, as well the surprising relationship between wisdom, curiosity and gratitude. Click here to read the full interview.
Professor of Organisational Psychology Stéphane Côté joins Igor and Charles on the podcast to discuss the science of emotional intelligence, machiavellian deviants, emotional super-readers, deep-acting vs surface-acting emotional management, and why you can’t hide your motivations from airport customs agents. Click here to listen to Episode 4.
Founding Director of The Columbia Aging Centre and a lifespan psychologist, Ursula M. Staudinger is highly regarded for her work in the development of both the Berlin Wisdom Paradigm and the Bremen Measure of Personal Wisdom. She spoke with evidencebasedwisdom about the critical relationship between wisdom, personality adjustment and growth. Click here to read more.
From rumblings started in Chicago last summer, Charles Cassidy from Evidence-Based Wisdom and Igor Grossmann from the University of Waterloo have joined forces to launch a brand new podcast on the science of wisdom: The On Wisdom Podcast. The podcast thrives on a diet of freewheeling conversation on wisdom and decision-making, and includes regular guests spots with leading behavioural scientists from the field of wisdom research and beyond. Click here to learn more.
EBW live radio interview Monday 28th August 2017 on San Francisco’s KGO 810 Radio for The Ethan Bearman Show. Discussion covers wise self-distancing, climate change, car ownership and the influence our peer networks have on the wisdom of our personal and political decisions.
Director of The Stein Institute for Research on Ageing, and Distinguished Professor of Psychiatry and Neurosciences at the University of California, San Diego, Dilip Jeste talks to evidencebasedwisdom about the six components of wisdom, the family model of the wise brain, and the future of wisdom-enhancing interventions. Click here to read the full interview.
Does searching for meaning in life actually make us happier or even wiser? Well it’s not quite as straightforward as you might expect, according to some recent research to emerge from a team in Vancouver, Canada. And might how we file away our experiences determine if we become either happier or wiser? Click here to read the full dispatch.
Professor of Philosophy Stephen Grimm talks to EBW about this summer’s NYC Wisdom Seminar at Fordham University and the complementary roles that psychologists and philosophers can play in defining and measuring wisdom. Click here to read the full dispatch.
The new EBW article What’s So Funny About Armageddon? How Humor Can Save Us From Ourselves is published by Intentional Insights. The article explores wisdom research that suggests humor has a central role to play in responding wisely to challenging times. Click here to read the full article.
EBW live radio interview Wednesday 24th May 2017 on San Francisco’s KGO 810 Radio for The Ethan Bearman Show. Discussion covers the science of wisdom at work behind SNL, The Simpsons and Seinfeld. Can humor help us navigate challenging times with wisdom?
EBW discusses the science of wisdom, risk and uncertainty with risk specialist Ben Cattaneo for his All Things Risk podcast, hitting on political persuasion, compassion and artificial wisdom along the way. Click here to hear the full episode.
The new EBW article What Would Gandhi Do About Trump? High-Time For a Science Of Wisdom is published by Intentional Insights. As stated on the site ‘The science of wisdom provides useful insights for turbulent political times.’ Click here to read the full article. Also published on The Huffington Post and Psychology Today.
Director of The Wisdom and Identity Center and Associate Professor in the Department of Developmental Psychology & Education at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto talks to evidencebasedwisdom about teaching for wisdom, the many faces of wisdom and the importance of seeking the broadest cultural frame for wisdom. Click here to read the full interview.
As part of the Wisdom Profiles Series, Wisdom Researcher Jeffrey Dean Webster talks to evidencebasedwisdom about the development of his Self-Assessed Wisdom Scale (SAWS), the HERO(E) model of wisdom and the surprising role humour and time perspectives play in the development of wisdom. Click here to read the full interview.
EBW live radio interview Friday 3rd February 2017 on San Francisco’s KGO 810 Radio for The Ethan Bearman Show. Discussion covers Gandhi, Trump, the Science of Wisdom and a great deal in-between.
Director of the University of Waterloo’s Wisdom and Culture Lab Igor Grossmann talks to evidencebasedwisdom about the complex processes behind thinking and acting wisely, Solomon’s paradox, the importance of context, and the role of self-distancing in supporting wise reasoning. Click here to read the full interview
The University of Chicago launches the first-of-its-kind Center for Practical Wisdom. Professor Howard Nusbaum, who will serve as the Center’s first director said “We believe that we can now study wisdom in a way that would be credible and help promote the importance of understanding wisdom research, as well as the importance of understanding wisdom itself”. Click here to read more.
In the latest interview in the series, Adult Cognition researcher Eeva K. Kallio talks to evidencebasedwisdom about integrative thinking, ill-defined problems, the limits of logic and the launch of the new European Wisdom Research Network Sophia & Phronesis. Click here to read the full interview
As part of the Wisdom Profiles Series, Wisdom Research pioneer Monika Ardelt talks to evidencebasedwisdom about the development of her Three-dimensional Wisdom Scale, the role of wisdom in ageing and dying well and the possible role meditation might play in the development of wisdom. Click here to read the full interview.
10 short discussions on the big ideas and themes emerging from the field of wisdom research. Does Wisdom prevent happiness? What actually makes us wiser and what on earth does humour have to do with wisdom ? Click here to hear it all.
In the first of a new series of interviews, Emeritus Professor Bruce Lloyd talks to evidencebasedwisdom about wisdom in business and the importance of positive conversations. Click here to read the full interview.
Read the latest post highlighting 5 very distinct perspectives within the field of wisdom research. Contributors from neuroscience, psychology, sociology and cognitive science.
7 experts including sociologists, psychologists, gameshow hosts and native Mohawk Elders discuss the science of wisdom live on CBC radio. Click here to listen to the full programme
“Wisdom is generally considered the pinnacle of insight into the human condition and about the means and end of a good life.”
Baltes & Staudinger, 2000