1 September 2010

A weird way of thinking has prevailed worldwide

Be the first to share
putting people first
by experientia

Anand Giridharadas
If a provocative new study is to be believed, the world lives in a situation where American undergraduates monopolize our knowledge of human nature, writes Anand Giridharadas in the New York Times.

“In the study, published last month in the journal Behavioral and Brain Sciences, Joseph Henrich, Steven J. Heine and Ara Norenzayan — all psychologists at the University of British Columbia, in Vancouver — condemn their field’s quest for human universals.

Psychologists claim to speak of human nature, the study argues, but they have mostly been telling us about a group of WEIRD outliers, as the study calls them — Westernized, educated people from industrialized, rich democracies.

According to the study, 68 percent of research subjects in a sample of hundreds of studies in leading psychology journals came from the United States, and 96 percent from Western industrialized nations. Of the American subjects, 67 percent were undergraduates studying psychology — making a randomly selected American undergraduate 4,000 times likelier to be a subject than a random non-Westerner.”

Read article

Be the first to share
Related Article
11 October 2014
Reflections on Capital One’s acquisition of Adaptive Path
This week Toronto-based UX strategist Rami Tabbah and I discussed Capital One's acquisition of Adaptive Path. We were both a bit surprised by the lack of real reflection on the pros and cons of this …
Related Article
12 February 2014
Data and design in innovative citizen experiences
The past decade has brought enormous and growing benefits to ordinary citizens through applications built on public data. Any release of data offers advantages to experts, such as developers and journalists, but there is a …
Related Article
3 November 2013
[Book] Changing Behaviours: On the Rise of the Psychological State
Changing Behaviours: On the Rise of the Psychological State by Rhys Jones, Jessica Pykett and Mark Whitehead Edward Elgar Publishers 2013, 240 pages [Amazon link] Abstract Changing Behaviours charts the emergence of the behaviour change agenda in UK based public policy …
Related Article
25 September 2013
Simon Roberts (EPIC chair) reflects on Big Data, business and ethnography
Simon Roberts, the highly engaging, smart and easily approachable chair of the EPIC conference last week, was so absorbed with all the logistics that he didn't find the concentration to speak his mind during the …
Related Article
31 May 2013
How Obama used ‘Ethnography Project’ to defeat Mitt Romney in 2012
Ken Walsh reports on how Team Obama made an unprecedented effort to understand the voters and speak their language, slicing and dicing the electorate with a sophistication and savvy that the Republicans couldn't match and …
Related Article
6 April 2013
Videos of breakout sessions at the recent Interaction13 conference in Toronto
The IxDA gathered in Toronto, Canada’s largest center for design, for its 6th annual conference. Here are the video records of the breakout talks that took place (grouped thematically).   AGILE / LEAN Josh Seiden: A designer's introduction …
Related Article
6 April 2013
Videos of keynotes and panel discussions at the recent Interaction13 conference in Toronto
The IxDA gathered in Toronto, Canada’s largest center for design, for its 6th annual conference. Here are the video records of the keynotes and panel discussions that took place. KEYNOTES Albert Shum: Connecting - emerging themes for …
Related Article
16 February 2013
Tablet use in California and Ontario high schools – Field observations by Experientia collaborator
Francesca Salvadori (Italian blog) is an Italian high school teacher who runs a 1:1 iPad pilot program in her school, and collaborates with Experientia on the topic of digital publishing. A few weeks ago she …

We are an international experience design consultancy helping companies and organisations to innovate their products, services and processes by putting people and their experiences first.

1 January 2015
Happy Playful New Year
21 December 2014
Experientia’s Twitter feed live

Experientia has now its own Twitter feed. Four months of Putting People First posts and other links have already been uploaded. If you followed Experientia on Twitter through the feed of its CEO, Mark Vanderbeeken, make sure to now also follow the company (but don’t unfollow Mark, who will keep on tweeting away). And while […]

19 December 2014
Putting People First blog redesigned

Experientia’s Putting People First blog has been redesigned. It is now entirely responsive, allows for easier browsing, searching, and filtering, and features larger images on the posts. The entire history of posts remains accessible as before. We are still tweaking things and welcome any feedback.

27 November 2014
Why the world needs anthropologists – an update

Why the world needs anthropologists – Coming out of the ivory tower Location: Padua, Italy, Centro Culturale Altinate/San Gaetano Date and time: Friday, 5 December 2014, 13:00 – 18:00 Padua, Italy, 5 December 2014 – The second edition of the international symposium of applied anthropologists attempts to erase the boundary between ‘pure’ and ‘applied’ anthropology, […]

30 October 2014
The BancoSmart ATM by Experientia for UniCredit selected for ADI Design Index

Last year Experientia designed the interface of an ATM of UniCredit, a major Italian bank. The interface is now rolled out across the bank’s ATMs in Italy, to great satisfaction of the bank and the customers alike, since interaction speed is much faster and error rates went down dramatically. Last year UniCredit and Experientia also […]

29 October 2014
Experientia at EPIC: UX transforming a financial institution

In September 2014 Experientia gave a presentation on working as UX professionals with financial institutions at the EPIC conference in New York. The paper is now available on the EPIC site in HTML and PDF versions (free registration req’d). Abstract Application of a user-centered approach rooted in ethnographic methodologies facilitates a major European bank’s transition […]

See all articles