CVS Puts Oreos in the Back, Psychology’s Perspective Problem, plus more weekly links

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A selection of recent behavioral science news, articles, and resources of note:

  • Behavioral science improves policy—it saves governments money and helps citizens lead better lives. President Barack Obama knows this, which is why this week he formally established the Social and Behavioral Sciences Team. Our story here. (The White House, The Psych Report)
  • Unfortunately, it’s not too infrequently that a major western, rich, industrialized, democratized group of do-gooders assumes things about the people they’re trying to help that simply aren’t true. Claire Melamed writes why it’s so important for organizations to collect data about what their constituents really think. (Aeon)  
  • Like neuroeconomics and neuroeducation, neuroaesthetics is all the rage. But it has its limits. Philosopher Alva Noë explains. (The Chronicle of Higher Education)
  • First they stopped selling you cigarettes, now CVS wants you to eat healthier too. The drug store chain is using choice architecture to nudge customers to buy less junk food. Oreos to the back, granola to the front. (Huffington Post)
  • An important lesson from psychology is the benefit of diverse viewpoints. Teams with differing points of view tend to be more creative and better problem-solvers. Ironically, psychology suffers from a lack of diversity in a key area—political perspective. A newly published article examines the causes and consequences of a lack of political diversity in psychology. (Behavioral and Brain Sciences)
  • Death by brain cancer, life by neuroscience? Before dying at age 23, one aspiring neuroscientist raised $85,000 to have her brain frozen and preserved in hopes scientists will one day revive the contents of her mind. (New York Times)

 

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