The Evolution of Irrationality

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Duration 00:58:46

Yale University

Laurie Santos is a professor of psychology at Yale University. She was awarded the Stanton Prize for outstanding early-career contributions to interdisciplinary research in philosophy and psychology, as well as the Arthur Greer Memorial Prize for Outstanding Junior Faculty at Yale University. In 2012, she was awarded the Lex Hixon Prize for teaching excellence in the social sciences at Yale University. She has been listed in Popular Science Magazine as one of their “Brilliant 10” young minds, and in Time Magazine as a “Leading Campus Celebrity.”


Monkeynomics & The Evolution of Decision Making

In this talk, Professor Santos will explore the evolutionary roots of some of your more irrational decisions. We will start by reviewing some classic biases in the field of judgment and decision-making. She will then turn to the question of how these biases came about in the first place by exploring some recent experiments in “monkeynomics” that demonstrate how monkeys make some of the same financial choices we do.


The lecture will also explore ways that the human species is uniquely irrational. The lecture will end with a discussion of cases in which monkeys make smarter choices than people do. You’ll leave the lecture with a new understanding of your decision-making biases, both in terms of where they come from and how they can be overcome.

Learn More About The Evolution of Decision Making

Learn more about the evolution of decision making and other important topics by checking out additional great videos at OneDayU, including ‘Understanding Insomnia: Why People Can’t Sleep’, ‘Mark Twain On Travel & Writing& ‘Ancient Athens Culture & History’ all on-demand now.



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charismatic and insightful content that comes with actionable things for me to apply

2 years ago
Maggie Olmstead

I learned a lot

It’s good to pay attention to the smart – and dumb – stuff we do as high-level primates.

4 months ago
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