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Stories by Adam Waytz

Quantiphobia and the turning of morals into facts

When stats-wiz and political prognosticator Nate Silver’s new venture, FiveThirtyEight, launched last week, it punctuated the rise of “data journalism,” journalism that incorporates actual numerical data into reporting and storytelling!  Silver’s star rose through his New York Times blog, which largely focused on political analysis and his ability to correctly predict 50 out of 50 [...]..

March 25, 2014 — Adam Waytz
The Feeling of Being Stared At

The Feeling of Being Stared At

Perhaps my favorite psychology article of all time, is Edward Titchener’s, “The Feeling of Being Stared At,” which appeared in Science on December 23, 1898 (almost 115 years ago exactly!)...

December 17, 2013 — Adam Waytz
The problem with rich people and ethics

The problem with rich people and ethics

The main problem with rich people and ethics, has nothing to do with them per se; it has to do with us, and the fairly well developed stereotypes we hold about what the ethics of the rich are.  Unlike, say, people who repair laundry machines, or Aleut musicians, or female cricketers (about whom we do [...]..

September 27, 2013 — Adam Waytz
More Questions Than Answers About Whistleblowing

More Questions Than Answers About Whistleblowing

My colleagues, Liane Young and James Dungan, and I recently wrote an op-ed in the New York Times about whistleblowing based on recent research we also published on the topic.  Very simply, our work demonstrates that people’s willingness to blow the whistle (i.e...

August 20, 2013 — Adam Waytz
When Neglecting One’s Future Benefits Others

When Neglecting One’s Future Benefits Others

Sometimes the same psychological beliefs that do a disservice to oneself can provide a benefit others, a paradox demonstrated by a forthcoming article by Dan Bartels, Trevor Kvaran, and Shaun Nichols.  The article examines how people’s views about the nature of “the self” affect their generosity toward others.  In particular, the article centers on ideas [...]..

July 29, 2013 — Adam Waytz

In Memoriam: Dan Wegner

Last week, our friend, psychologist, Dan Wegner, passed away and we will miss him dearly.  It is hard to express  the magnitude of Dan’s influence on my own work as well as on the field of psychology in general.  His research touched on a multitude of important areas in psychology, from memory, to consciousness, to [...]..

July 13, 2013 — Adam Waytz

A Different Look at the Political Divide on Morality

JZ, In your last post you talk about the political divide in morality in terms of the groundbreaking Moral Foundations Theory, which demonstrates that political liberals place greater emphasis on the values of fairness and harm avoidance whereas political conservatives place greater emphasis on purity, respect for authority, and loyalty...

May 31, 2013 — Adam Waytz

The Next Taboo?

JZ, It took me all week to think of an answer to the question you posed in the previous post, “what practices are banal today, but in 100 years will seem unspeakably immoral?”  My gut response was to say boxing.  I figured that we are becoming increasingly sensitive to acts of bodily harm of all [...]..

May 10, 2013 — Adam Waytz

Is Moralization on the Upswing?

JZ,You raise some questions about what "counts" as moral behavior in your last post, which got me thinking about a related question that changes the conversation a bit: What counts as a moral issue?...

April 25, 2013 — Adam Waytz

A moral paradox

JZ,As much as I want to offer a thoughtful response to your point on science and communication in the last post, I really have nothing else to add because I think you nailed it.

March 21, 2013 — Adam Waytz
A Taboo Exchange

A Taboo Exchange

Financial incentives backfire when negotiations involve deeply held beliefs

June 28, 2010 — Adam Waytz
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