53 episodes

Welcome to Cognitive Revolution with Cody Kommers. In this show we'll explore the personal side of the intellectual journey. It's all too easy to see the successes of great scientists, creatives, and thinkers as unattainable. But that's because we only see the outcome, not the process. Cognitive Revolution is a show about the steps these great minds took to get to the top.

Cognitive Revolution Cody Kommers

    • Social Sciences
    • 5.0 • 10 Ratings

Welcome to Cognitive Revolution with Cody Kommers. In this show we'll explore the personal side of the intellectual journey. It's all too easy to see the successes of great scientists, creatives, and thinkers as unattainable. But that's because we only see the outcome, not the process. Cognitive Revolution is a show about the steps these great minds took to get to the top.

    #43: Denise Sekaquaptewa on How to Make Universities Work For Everyone

    #43: Denise Sekaquaptewa on How to Make Universities Work For Everyone

    Denise Sekaquaptewa is the University Diversity and Social Transformation Professor of Psychology at the University of Michigan. She did her PhD at the Ohio State University, and her research has focused on stereotype threat, implicit bias, and prejudice. In this conversation we talk about her family's heritage, her experience in community college, deciding between continuing in the service industry and becoming a psychologist, books she has loved, the changes she would like to make to help academic departments become places where lots of kinds of people can succeed, and why she believes becoming a good person comes before becoming a good scholar.

    • 48 min
    #42: Richard Nisbett on Telling More than He Can Know

    #42: Richard Nisbett on Telling More than He Can Know

    Richard Nisbett is the Theodore M. Newcomb Distinguished Professor of social psychology and co-director of the Culture and Cognition program at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor. He is also the co-author of one of my favorite psychology papers of all time: "Telling More than We Can Know." In this conversation, Richard self-reports on what got him into psychology, the books that most impacted him, the influence of his mentor Stanley Schachter, and his best practices for collaboration and mentorship. Those self reports sure seem accurate, though I'm not sure either of us is in an especially good position to judge. We also digress a fair bit into psychological history, particularly about Freud, Gordon Allport, and Kurt Lewin. Another fun fact about Richard: he's Malcolm Gladwell's favorite psychologist.

    • 1 hr 43 min
    #41: Michael McCullough on Why We Give a Damn

    #41: Michael McCullough on Why We Give a Damn

    Michael McCullough is a professor of psychology at University of California, San Diego, where he runs the Evolution and Human Behavior Lab. Mike and I had a chat about his new book, "The Kindness of Strangers." The title for that book as originally conceived was "Why We Give a Damn" -- and even prior to that "Why We Don't Give a Damn." I happen to like those titles, though I can understand why the publisher didn't, and so I thought I'd trot them out to have a modest life of their own. In this conversation, we talk about Mike's first inspiration to study psychology, the influence of Christianity on his personal development and later his study of religion, his approach to mentorship, where he thought the conversation surrounding the biological basis of altruism went wrong, and rethinking the parable of the Good Samaritan.

    More info: codykommers.com/podcast

    • 1 hr 11 min
    Actually Against Academia

    Actually Against Academia

    A couple of weeks ago, Mickey Inzlicht and Yoel Inbar, of the excellent podcast Two Psychologists Four Beers, released a discussion of theirs called 'Against Academia?' The motivation for the discussion was that Mickey had noticed several occasions on which people -- one of them being himself -- were called out for expressing positive takes on life in academia. The mainstream position to hold on academic life is a negative one: it's a biased system, a pyramid scheme, a travesty for mental health, etc. They break down a number of considerations on both sides, digging into where some of these claims are identifying something real and important and other areas where they are exaggerations. Both Mickey and Yoel are tenured professors at an excellent university, and they acknowledge that their view is one of the better ones you can get in an academic appointment. It's a really useful conversation that brings up a lot of worthwhile, well-considered points. I'd like to add to it by responding to it from my own perspective: as someone currently doing a PhD who does not plan to pursue an academic career.

    Full transcript: https://www.codykommers.com/post/actually-against-academia

    • 20 min
    #40: Howard Gardner on the Synthesizing Mind

    #40: Howard Gardner on the Synthesizing Mind

    Howard Gardner is the John H. and Elisabeth A. Hobbs Research Professor of Cognition and Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. He's best known as the developer of the theory of multiple intelligences, the idea that being smart is more complex than just an IQ score. That theory was introduced in his 1983 book Frames of Mind. In this conversation we talk about his interdisciplinary education, his non-traditional path in academia, the principles of the "synthesizing mind," when to break the rules and when to follow them, and how to connect with one's deeper humanity. Howard's latest book, A Synthesizing Mind, is out now.

    More info: codykommers.com/podcast

    • 1 hr 11 min
    #39: Yael Niv on the Moral Obligations of Scientists

    #39: Yael Niv on the Moral Obligations of Scientists

    Yael Niv is a professor in Princeton department of psychology and the Princeton Neuroscience Institute. She is also a discernibly high-quality human being. I have been an admirer of her and her work for many years now. But she's been in the fore of my mind of late because of a couple papers she recently published: on "The Primacy of Behavioral Research in Understanding the Brain" and "The Case Against Economic Values in the Brain" (co-authored with Benjamin Hayden). In this interview, we mostly talk about her background as a psychologically-oriented computational neuroscientist, which has been impressively focused from relatively early on. It's clear how a lot of the ideas that are gaining wide-spread attention (even outside the usual circles of computational neuroscience) having been circling in the heads of Yael and her colleagues for a long time. We talk about the origins of her behavioral primacy paper, as well as the best advice on mentoring she learned from Peter Dayan. It's a fun conversation, and I hope you enjoy!

    More info: codykommers.com/podcast

    • 58 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
10 Ratings

10 Ratings

Stovestove11111 ,

Excellent

Amazing guests (David Pizarro! Paul Bloom!), looking at the more personal side of a psychologist’s journey. Perfect podcast for psychology graduate students, or if you like similar psych podcasts (Two Psychologists Four Beers, Black Goat, Very Bad Wizards, Psychology Podcast)…

BobHope68 ,

The podcast I didn’t know I needed

Wish I had thought of this idea because these are the kinds of questions I’ve always wanted to ask the great minds I look up to. My non-scientist brain appreciates the personal angles as I see a bit of myself in each of these interviews. Looking forward to more content!

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