— Cultural Sources of Newness

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Dezember 2011 Monthly archive

Listening in the sleepless early morning hours to a BBC radio 4 documentary about advances in neuroscience and their implications for society, I began to wonder: might there be something in this for my research on the impacts of artistic interventions in organizations? In a series of three programs, Matthew Taylor, former strategy advisor to Tony Blair and now Chief Executive of the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA) offers listeners the opportunity to hear proponents and critics of the nascent field of neuroscience and society. The argument in the third program in the series is that the majority of decisions are made unconsciously by the brain, a factor that neuro-marketers and some policymakers are trying to take advantage of by “talking directly to the brain” in order to direct human behaviour towards (what they consider to be) desirable ends. The program gives examples of research and practice, for example about influencing fast food choices, election campaigns and reducing patient no-show rates for their doctors’ appointments.

What might such research have to do with artistic interventions in organizations? Several statements in the program struck me as potentially relevant.

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