EPS Colloquium Special Lecture

Date: 

Monday, February 8, 2021, 12:00pm

Location: 

Zoom

Tessa Charlesworth, PhD Student, Department of Psychology, Harvard EPS, will present "Implicit Bias: Can It Be Changed Over the Long-Term?"

Tessa Charlesworth, PhD Student, Department of Psychology, Harvard EPS, will present "Implicit Bias: Can It Be Changed Over the Long-Term?"

Change is an inevitable and essential feature of human social life. In every era, every year, every day, what humans think and feel about other groups is undergoing continual transformation. But one particularly sticky part of our thoughts and feelings about social groups rests in our implicit biases - our attitudes and beliefs that are less conscious, less controllable, and (until recently) thought to be unchangeable. In this talk, I will review my research that seeks to document and explain whether, and if so how, implicit attitudes and beliefs can change over the long-term. Using data from over 6 million tests of implicit attitudes and beliefs collected continuously from U.S. and international respondents since 2007, as well as new tools from natural language processing applied to over 65 million words of archived natural text, I will walk through the first evidence for the possibility of long-term change even in our implicit biases. During this present time of significant societal upheaval, the data and conclusions presented in this talk can help us as scientists and citizens better understand the nature of our society and our social progress: how far we've come in our biases, but also how far we have yet to go.

Bio: Tessa Charlesworth is a PhD candidate in the Department of Psychology at Harvard, where she works with Mahzarin R. Banaji. Hailing from Victoria, BC, Canada, Tessa completed her B.A. in Psychology at Columbia University in New York City. Since then, her research has focused on understanding how our thoughts and feelings about social groups are formed and changed over the long time spans of history and individual development. She seeks to answer these questions using a diverse set of methods including big data analyses and psychological experiments.

The event will be held on Zoom.

Contact: Katrina Blanch // kblanch@fas.harvard.edu