Subscribe to Feed            Add to your Favourites

“It suddenly struck me that that tiny pea, pretty and blue, was the Earth. I put up my thumb and shut one eye, and my thumb blotted out the planet Earth. I didn't feel like a giant. I felt very, very small.” – Neil Armstrong (1930-2012)

Fresh Reads from the Science 'o sphere!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Everybody Cheats... At Least A Little Bit

Interesting talk by MIT behavioural economist Dan Ariely about the psychology of cheating and how it relates to the stock market.

While the observation that morality is heavily dependent on the social context is not new, what really impressed me most is the implication of his experimental results - that a moral code not only helps to regulate in-group behaviour, but also concurrently enhance in-group loyalty via a "Us vs Them" mechanism.

Even if the moral code itself is completely made up!

I don't understand why there is a deep human need to feel morally superior to other people, but this need can clearly be exploited by people who stand to benefit richly from it.

Pipette tip to Mind Hacks.

Would you like to know more?

Another TED talk by Prof. Dan Ariely
- Are we in control of our own decisions?
- Predictably Irrational