Under the Cortex: Traffic Stops and Race: Police Conduct May Bend to Local Biases

New research covering tens of millions of U.S. traffic stops found that Black drivers were more likely than White drivers to be stopped by police in regions with a more racially biased White population. Pierce Ekstrom, a researcher at the University of Nebraska and lead author on one of two concurrent papers in the journal Psychological Science talks about …

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2022 Spence Award Mini Episode: Jason Okonofua and the Power of Empathy

The winners of the 2022 APS Janet Taylor Spence Award for Transformative Early Career Contributions represent some of the brightest and most innovative young psychological scientists in the world. In a series of mini-episodes, Under the Cortex talks with each winner about their research and goals. Today, Jason Okonofua (University of California, Berkeley) tells us about his research on empathy and …

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Take a Career Break, but Stay In the Game

You got burned out. Your kids needed you. You became a crypto millionaire overnight.  Whatever the reason—congrats. Welcome to your career break, length TBD.  Time off by choice can be wonderful if you can swing it, a chance to recalibrate your priorities and detox from the stress of the working world. It can also be a kind of limbo. How to keep …

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The Questionable Compatibility of Introverts and Extroverts

Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung popularized the terms introvert and extrovert in the 1900s; but a century later, his postulations about personality types have become so warped by popular culture that the reputations of introverts everywhere are at stake. Jung originally sought to understand how people derive and orient their energies. That is to say, according …

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Safer Social Environments Could Help Prevent Campus Sexual Assault 

Sexual assault cases often come down to one person’s word against another’s. The trials therefore sometimes involve character witnesses—individuals called by the prosecution or defense to demonstrate the trustworthiness of the alleged perpetrator or victim of a crime. But the idea that a perpetrator’s good character in certain areas of their life precludes them from …

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Traffic Stops and Race: Police Conduct May Bend to Local Biases

Summary: When it comes to police traffic stops, the context in which police officers operate is important. New research covering tens of millions of U.S. traffic stops found that Black drivers were more likely than White drivers to be stopped by police in regions with a more racially biased White population. Traffic stops, which happen …

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Personality and Birth Cohort: Does the Decade Make a Difference?

Do people’s personality traits reflect when they were born? In a recent article in Psychological Science, Naemi D. Brandt (University of Hamburg) and a team of researchers from Germany and the United States examined how adult Big Five personality traits changed across generations of people in the United States. The traits—conscientiousness, agreeableness, neuroticism, extraversion, and …

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