10 TED Talks About Human Behavior Worth Watching
TED Talks are a great way for the world’s most brilliant people to communicate highly advanced or technical content in a very easy and entertaining format. We have gathered some of the great talks about human behavior below. There are tons more and we encourage you to go to TED.com for hundreds of hours of high-quality entertainment and education in all sorts of fields.
We hope you will enjoy these 10 talks from the world of human behavior and its innovators and deep thinkers.
Behavioral economist Dan Ariely, the author of Predictably Irrational, uses classic visual illusions and his own counter-intuitive (and sometimes shocking) research findings to show how we’re not as rational as we think when we make decisions.
Steven Pinker’s book The Blank Slate argues that all humans are born with some innate traits. Here, Pinker talks about his thesis, and why some people found it incredibly upsetting.
“Life comes at us very quickly, and what we need to do is take that amorphous flow of experience and somehow extract meaning from it.” In this funny, enlightening talk, educational psychologist Peter Doolittle details the importance — and limitations — of your “working memory,” that part of the brain that allows us to make sense of what’s happening right now.
Using examples from vacations to colonoscopies, Nobel laureate and founder of behavioral economics Daniel Kahneman reveals how our “experiencing selves” and our “remembering selves” perceive happiness differently. This new insight has profound implications for economics, public policy — and our own self-awareness..
Sensing the motives and feelings of others is a natural talent for humans. But how do we do it? Here, Rebecca Saxe shares fascinating lab work that uncovers how the brain thinks about other peoples’ thoughts — and judges their actions.
Psychologist Barry Schwartz takes aim at a central tenet of western societies: freedom of choice. In Schwartz’s estimation, choice has made us not freer but more paralyzed, not happier but more dissatisfied.
Alain de Botton
Alain de Botton examines our ideas of success and failure — and questions the assumptions underlying these two judgments. Is success always earned? Is failure? He makes an eloquent, witty case to move beyond snobbery to find true pleasure in our work.
Sheena Iyengar studies how we make choices — and how we feel about the choices we make. At TEDGlobal, she talks about both trivial choices (Coke v. Pepsi) and profound ones, and shares her groundbreaking research that has uncovered some surprising attitudes about our decisions.
Are we born to be optimistic, rather than realistic? Tali Sharot shares new research that suggests our brains are wired to look on the bright side — and how that can be both dangerous and beneficial.
We hope you have enjoyed this list. If you are curious to learn more about human behavior and how it can be measured, download our free 52-page long pocket guide providing valuable insights into human behavior research.