Covid-19 Crisis: Eugen Dimant, PhD on the Roles of Social Norms and Good Science
Eugen Dimant, PhD is an Associate Professor of Practice in Behavioral and Decision Sciences, which is part of the new Center for Social Norms and Behavioral Dynamics under Cristina Bicchieri, Ph.D.’s leadership at the University of Pennsylvania. Much of his work is focused on how social norms are formed and impact our lives.
We talked about how social norms drive individual behaviors in different ways and how research on coronavirus-related behaviors is being completed at record speeds – but not necessarily all in good ways. He recommends slowing down, working across disciplines, and being clear on research objectives to insure test methods and data collection conform to the highest standards and deliver the most meaningful results. He also mentioned that sustainable behavior change requires more than nudges and the roles that both descriptive and injunctive norms play (they are described in greater detail in our grooving session after the interview).
It’s also important to be reminded that when we see empty shelves where toilet paper used to be, we almost always feel the need to buy more. Be careful out there.
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