top of page

Neuropolitics and Sustainability Talk Series I: How can we achieve inclusionary social brains?

Registration is closed
See other events
Neuropolitics and Sustainability Talk Series I: How can we achieve inclusionary social brains?
Neuropolitics and Sustainability Talk Series I: How can we achieve inclusionary social brains?

Time & Location

26 Jan 2022, 16:15 – 17:30 CET

Online Event

About the event

When businesses try to achieve sustainable goals and increase diversity and inclusion within their organizations, they often struggle to implement this at the cognitive level for decision-makers, employees and customers. Why should our brains care? How to uphold cognitive inclusion in daily life and consistently over time? If our social brains all have exclusionary and dehumanizing abilities, what mechanisms underlie these abilities and how can they be partially overcome? Are current strategies employed by businesses effective in persuading the social brains of people within their organization and those of their customers? 

We started at our last General Assembly with an input of Dr. Liya Yu. Since we see a rising relevance of these questions for business sustainability approaches, we’ll propose several online workshops to you.

This event will feature an introductory talk by social neuroscientist Dr. Lasana Harris and present the findings of his lab on the role that dehumanization plays in complex social settings – from homelessness and justice in the court room to economic objectification. As one of the founding cognitive scientists of the dehumanization field, Dr. Harris will offer insights into how a cognitive perspective can help businesses achieve inclusionary and humanizing goals within their organization and wider society.

Dr. Liya Yu will moderate the discussion, which will be set up in an interactive and engaging format, where participants are strongly encouraged to bring up examples and challenges they face within their own organizations. The emphasis will be on the discussion, so that participants can directly interact with Dr. Harris and flesh out solutions from a neurocognitive perspective. The goal is for participants to gain a novel perspective to achieve UN Global Compact goals, and adopt these practical insights in their everyday work. 

Speaker biographies 

Dr. Lasana Harris

is a Senior Lecturer in Social Cognition at University College London, where he leads the Boundaries of Social Cognition Lab. His research uses a social neuroscience approach to explore the neural correlates of dehumanization, prejudice, empathy and punishment, couched in a broader evolutionary and philosophical perspective. He applies his approach directly to real-world problems such as homelessness, racism, political violence and injustices in the legal system. He is considered one of the founding social neuroscientist within dehumanization and stereotype studies, and regularly takes on advising roles for governments and think tanks. He is the author of Invisible Mind: Flexible Social Cognition and Dehumanisation (MIT Press, 2017). 

Dr. Liya Yu 

is a political scientist and novelist. She was trained as a political philosopher at the University of Cambridge and completed her interdisciplinary political neuroscience doctoral work at Columbia University. As a German Chinese, she regularly appears in German and Chinese media, where she speaks on anti-Asian racism, immigrant mental health and how to make our hyperdiverse democracies succeed. She is the author of Vulnerable Minds: The Neuropolitics of Divided Societies (Columbia University Press, 2022). She is currently an artist-in-residence at Taipei’s Artist Village, where she is working on a feminist political novel that tackles the question of how to overcome Chinese nationalism in the 21st century. 

Watch the recording here.

Share this event

bottom of page