Susan Greenfield: Virtual Worlds & False Identities – Social Media or Social Pathology?

January 18, 2008

As communications technologies such as Second Life become more and more sensory and interactive, human beings are increasingly being forced to navigate environments that consistently blur the lines between fantasy and reality. And while most industry analysts praise this next big wave of “social media” a growing number of neuroscientists are critically analyzing how these “false identities” might impact us in our “real-life” interactions and relationships.

In this podcast, we are delighted to feature Baroness Susan Greenfield, one of the world’s leading brain researchers and the author of the upcoming book, ID The Quest for Identity in the 21st Century (May 2008, Hodder & Stoughton). As the Director of The Royal Institution of Great Britain and professor of pharmacology at Oxford University, her research and writing have advanced our understanding of the workings of the human brain and have stimulated public understanding of, and appreciation for, that most complex of human organs. And as one of Great Britain’s most popular and recognizable public figures, Baroness Greenfield has been instrumental in communicating the critical notion that the human brain is not only highly adaptive to our changing technological landscape, but also highly vulnerable to it as well.

Be sure to tune into this thought-provoking interview where we look at the latest science of human/technology interaction and examine how these emerging “virtual worlds” are increasingly shaping the human identity.