This seminar series aims to investigate as yet unanswered aspects of the debate over Behaviour Change and the use of psychology in techniques of governing. Specifically, we do not know enough about the effects of psychological forms of governance on national populations and specific social groups. Nor do we know what alternatives to Behaviour Change might look like if they were informed by participatory, observational or interpretive social science methods rather than economistic or behavioural science techniques and paradigms.
The seminars will discuss the Behaviour Change agenda in its wider context – in relation to how our cultural ideas about the brain, mind, behaviour and self are changing. Participants from a range of social science disciplines will identify research, practical and political challenges posed by the current policy enthusiasm for particular branches of positive psychology, wellbeing, happiness, flourishing and ‘mindfulness’ in order to examine two original aspects: (a) the cumulative effect, or unintended consequences of the use of psychology in public policy, and (b) the underlying assumptions and principles on which they are based.
There will be 5 seminars and 1 Postgraduate/early career Summer School in this series held at the Universities of Aberystwyth, Birmingham, Bristol, Durham, and at Collaborative Change social enterprise in Lancaster:
|Seminar 1||24th March 2014||Changing spaces, urban planning and neuroarchitecture|
|Seminar 2||23rd June 2014||Psychological resilience. Governing the brain, mind and behaviour|
|Seminar 3||15th and 16th December 2014||Re-Theorising ‘Behaviour Change’|
|Seminar 4||11th May 2015||Silver Bullets Need A Careful Aim. Dilemmas in applying behavioural insights|
|Seminar 5||15th Sept 2015||Critical Dialogues on Psychology, Behaviour and Brain Science: Graduate and Early Career Summer School|
|Seminar 6||14th Dec 2015||The Politics and Economics of Attention|