“Upside Down: Reflections on Conspiracy Theories”
with Dan Ariely
October 13, 2021
In this talk, Dan Ariely described some of his experiences helping the Israeli government during the COVID-19 crisis. He will focus specifically on issues concerning conspiracy theories, his firsthand experiences with them, and what he has learned during this process.
Dan Ariely is James B. Duke Professor of Psychology and Behavioral Economics at Duke University. Ariely does research in behavioral economics on the irrational ways people behave, described in plain language. His immersive introduction to irrationality took place as he overcame injuries sustained in an explosion. During a range of treatments in the burn department he faced a variety of irrational behaviors that were immensely painful and persistent. He began researching ways to better deliver painful and unavoidable treatments to patients. Ariely became engrossed with the idea that we repeatedly and predictably make the wrong decisions in many aspects of our lives and that research could help change some of these patterns. After using his knowledge of decision-making and behavioral economics to convince his girlfriend to marry him, Ariely realized that understanding decision-making can help anyone in their daily life.