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Heymans colloquium: Prof. Gregory Maio, The Importance of Mental Representations of Values

Wanneer:do 27-03-2014 10:00 - 11:00
Waar:Room Bl.0018, Bloemstraat 36, Groningen

LECTURER Prof. Gregory Maio (Cardiff University, Cardiff, UK)

TITLE The Importance of Mental Representations of Values

DATE & TIME Thursday, 27 March 2014, 10.00 – 11.00 hrs

LOCATION Room Bl.0018, Bloemstraat 36, Groningen

ABSTRACT People claim to attach high importance to diverse abstract ideals, such as helpfulness, equality, and the environment. At the same time, our actions occasionally seem to mismatch the values we claim to hold. This is a logical consequence of relevant vagaries in how values are mentally represented. Values can be encoded (1) in relation to each other, (2) as single abstract entities, and (3) as concrete instantiations. Each level of mental representation conveys a different perspective on the potential antecedents and consequences of values. This presentation will demonstrate the utility of this perspective through a series of simple experiments that describe how the effects of values depend on (a) their place in a system of values and (b) their recent concrete instantiations. These experiments show how an understanding of the cognitive representations of values helps to predict their role in judgment and behavior.


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