Cass Sunstein, Harvard law professor, discusses his book “Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness,” at Cambridge Forum. He applies social science research on human behavior to legal questions in the stock market, mortgage markets, environmental protection, and family law. http://forum-network.org
Archivio per 29 gennaio 2016
The show put entrepreneurs and celebrities in with charities in amongst the work and on the frontline developing innovative and ground-breaking projects that could have profound, positive effects for those in need tackling some of Britains biggest issues, while secretly trying to help secure £2 million of Lottery money that could turn the big idea into reality.
With youth unemployment increasing and now nearly 1 million people under 25 not in work, job centres are failing in my opinion to engage young people with the idea of finding a job. But what if the job centre was reinvented by young people, for young people? (designed by the customer for the customer, in other words).
Dave Fishwick was tasked with tackling this issue.
Straight-talking, self-made millionaire Dave Fishwick is one of the biggest suppliers of minibuses in Britain and in 2011 he took on the banking industry and successfully fought to open his own bank, so he is used to radical thinking.
This is a response to a post by Julie Drybrough, so it might be useful to check out her post before reading on. What I liked about her post and most of her posts is that it enlivened me and gave me an insight into what goes on for HER, rather than just blether about the “ten best whatevers” which most often leaves me with a sense of altschmertz, so I heartily recommend subscribing to her blog. At the end of it, she invited people to respond in the spirit of critical thinking, but if I may have some license, I would like to respond in a spirit of loving collaboration and “building on”. As she implores herself to get out of her “bubble”, it’s so important for me, too, to expose myself to things which challenge me to think about myself and the perspectives I hold about the world, otherwise I am not entirely sure I would be of much good service to others.
We learn many things through imitation: how to walk, play an instument, sports, and even more. What are the processes in the brain responsible for imitation? For some years now, science has been examining the role of mirror neurons, but there is still much to understand. One study focusing on neurological patients showed that at least two components are involved in imitating gestures, each from a different hemisphere of the brain. The study, which SISSA participated in, was published in Neuropsychologia.
After a brain injury (caused by stroke or hemorrhage, for example), patients may have difficulty imitating gestures and movements of others (ideomotor apraxia). In the history of neuropsychology, these studies are among the best known (the first date back to the early 1900’s) as these deficits hinder therapy aimed at recovering motor skills, since the patient cannot perform gestures by imitating the doctor. In the last twenty years, these studies have found new significance thanks to the discovery of mirror neurons, and yet little is known about these processes. Many scientists think the left hemisphere plays a dominant role because this problem most often surfaces in cases of unilateral brain-damage of the left hemisphere. How then, can we explain the small percentage of apraxic patients who have suffered unilateral lesions to the right hemisphere?
Paola Mengotti, at SISSA at the time of the study, now at Forschungszentrum Jülich in Germany, SISSA Professor and Head of the iNSuLa Laboratory (Neuroscience and Society), Raffaella Rumiati, and colleagues conducted a study to answer this question. Twenty patients (visited at San Camillo in Venice and Azienda Ospedaliero-Universitaria Ospedali Riuniti in Trieste) with unilateral brain lesions in the left or right hemispheres, plus a control group participated in the study. The initial idea was that imitation is made up of at least two distinct tasks: motor imitation, and a spatial component. When we have to imitate someone else’s movements, we not only have to repeat the actions, but we also have to translate them to our body (mirror them). In the study, patients performed imitation tasks using one of the two components, motor or spatial. Performance for each component was then compared and categorized in relation to the type of lesion.
What emerged is that what counts in imitation is the similarity between what is seen and what is produced, and this of course depends on the individual type of deficit. “Analyzing the performance of two imitation tasks by patients with lesions in the right hemisphere and the left hemisphere, we were able to demonstrate that imitation is based on the similarity between the observed action and the one produced,” explains Rumiati. “This similarity reflects either an anatomical match or a spatial one. Lesions in the left hemisphere affect the former while lesions in the right hemisphere affect the latter.”