Prof. Daniel Meegan was featured in a New Scientist cover story recently about humans and sloppy thinking in the age of fake news and conspiracy theories.
Meegan, a neuroscientist and professor in the Department of Psychology, talked about zero-sum thinking – seeing life as a win-lose game – as one of the ways humans can be lazy in their thinking. Meegan said zero-sum thinking goes back to an evolutionary adaptation from when we lived in small bands of hunter-gatherers, and more for one person might have meant less for another. The article stated that zero-sum thinking might have played a contributing role in major events such as Brexit.
Meegan’s research explores cognitive tendencies that prevent people from making sensible choices.