Moral Deficiencies in the Arithmetic of Compassion

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2016-12-14 (Creation date: 2016-10-27)
Main contributor
Slovic, Paul
In many human and environmental crises, individuals and their governments exhibit a morally troubling response to the risk of mass casualties that can be described by the phrase “the more who die, the less we care,” reflecting a flawed “arithmetic of compassion.” Paul Slovic will present research demonstrating three non-rational psychological mechanisms that underlie this phenomenon: psychic numbing, pseudoinefficacy, and the prominence effect. After documenting these obstacles to rational decision making, he will explore ways to counteract them -- a roadmap for future research and its application to crisis management.
Patten Lecture Series 
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