We may not always be aware of it, but we all practice deliberate ignorance. In other words, we consciously choose not to seek or use information. This is as true for individuals as it is, for example, for organizations, welfare economics, and law. But where exactly does deliberate ignorance play a role? And when is it a blessing, when a curse? In our feature, we present examples and consider possible implications.
Measures to contain the Corona pandemic are the subject of politically charged debate and tend to polarize segments of the population. But how exactly do politicization and social mobilization affect the incidence of infection? Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development have examined this question using the USA as an example. The findings were published in Applied Network Science.
Human decision-making depends on the flexible processing of complex information, but how the brain may adapt processing to momentary task demands has remained unclear.
In a new study researchers have now outlined several crucial neural processes revealing that our brain networks may rapidly and flexibly shift from a rhythmic to a “noisy” state when the need to process more information increases.
Citizens of East Germany wanted to use music and lyrical forms to propagate hopes, desires, and visions of socialist Germany’s future and to influence the coming generation on an emotional level. Writing of the GDR as a “modern time regime”, Juliane Brauer tells the story of a promised future and the results of its failure to be realized. The certainty and belief in progress that characterized the beginnings were replaced with mistrust and disappointment over shattered dreams.
Some plants produce toxins that can make us sick – or even kill us. Thus, a wariness of plants makes sense from an evolutionary point of view, especially for infants and toddlers. Annie Wertz is investigating which behaviors protect children from dangerous plants and how they learn from adults which plants are safe to eat. Read more about this in the current MaxPlanckResearch.
May 21, 2021
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