For hiring requests and questions please contact my agent at Thinking Heads:
Iván Abanades (email@example.com, +34 91 310 77 40).
Our decisions define us. However, we rarely reflect on the process by which we make them. Science has taught us that this path is full of biases and idiosyncrasies and biases. The objective of this conference is to reveal this process with the aim of putting ourselves in control of our decisions. We will see:
- Why sometimes we trust blindly our decisions so much and others we doubt even when the evidence is overwhelming.
- The logic and hidden algorithms which often make hunches and intuitions so effective.
- How emotions and reasons are combined in decision making.
- What makes us more prone or less risky, more daring or more conservative.
- Slow and fast decisions. Which is more convenient and when and why?
The brain never stops changing and therefore we always have the potential ability to learn and transform ourselves. While as adults we feel that it is more difficult for an adult to change, this is largely an illusion, and that in the right circumstances an adult has an extraordinary capacity for learning.
In this conference we will understand why in general we perceive that once adults we have atrophied the capacity to learn and transform ourselves and how to revert this from an individual and corporate perspective. We will discover:
- That motivation holds the key to learning and that this largely explains what adults perceive as lack of plasticity.
- What contexts promote the transformation, both of a person and within a group.
- Why some things (like certain habits) have much greater resistance to change than others, and how to discover – to avoid frustrations – the space of what we can transform and what we cannot.
- The economy and effectiveness of change: in what circumstances it is optimal to promote innovation and change and in which it may actually be more prudent to moderate or temper innovation.
Leadership is a clear example where social and biological factors mix up. Leaders are found in all species and can be induced or inhibited by targeting specific biological mechanisms. But it is also built on social and cultural factors. Leadership is also an extraordinary example of commonality within diversity. While there is not a single way to be a leader, within this diversity there are common mechanisms in the gestural, the verbal, the corporal that are in the essence of human communication. In this talk we will explore from this perspective:
- What makes human communication effective, clear, relevant.
- Balance and dynamics between competitiveness and cooperation.
- What factors make groups more likely to become an effective team.
- What types, frequencies and dynamics of dialogue make the leadership process more effective.
Creativity remains as one of the most mysterious human virtues. It seems elusive for deliberate practice and hard to be taught or learned. The objective of this talk is, from a constructive but at the same time critical and skeptical, to understand:
- What is creativity and why does it seem such a variable human trait, between different people and even in different contexts for the same person?
- Creativity is a general virtue that can be generally developed by an individual, or is it instead a specific value, to specific domains (sports, music, writing, business …)
- What is the fuel of creativity, what are the necessary pieces to promote creative thinking?
- Is creativity always convenient and effective? Or on the contrary in some situations it is convenient to moderate and inhibit it. Relation to the balance between exploration and exploitation.
- We will investigate the neuroscience of creativity, understanding the role of sleep (night or day) of attention, and demolishing some myths such as that of a clearly distinct role of the cerebral hemispheres.
In complex problems knowledge is distributed among individuals. What is the best way to add up the voices of members of a group, each with different partial knowledge? We will in what decisions problems it is more convenient to trust the experts and in which it is optimal to aggregate diverse voices and opinions. We will see:
- How to use the intelligence and knowledge of each individual to come out with better group decisions.
- Mathematical and psychological principles that inform about the optimal way to balance the quality and diversity of opinions.
- Understand why small organized conversations boost the quality of decision making.
- How and why groups reach agreements on polarized problems in which individuals have radically different and seemingly irreconcilable opinions?
- How to foster and preserve the diversity of ideas while at the same time achieving a coherent and focused group functioning?
We are progressively discovering how to decipher the code of the human brain. We begin to understand how to read and write in the human brain and this presents us with unprecedented technological and ethical perspectives. In this talk we will outline this immediate future seeing how:
- Thoughts can be decoded from brain activity and routed to a machine (which can act on them) or to other brains.
- The ability to incorporate new senses, to perceive reality beyond the “natural” filters of perception.
- The change in medicine and education that can occur in a world in which human thinking can be deciphered from brain activity.
- The ability to write in the human brain, implant or erase memories, edit dreams. The fascinating future in the fanfare technology of the immediate future.