Link feast

In case you missed them – 10 of the best psychology links from the last week:

1. How too much empathy can actually lead us to do the wrong thing – thought-provoking essay by Paul Bloom. (related research covered on the Digest).

2. Thanks to books like Daniel Kahneman’s Thinking Fast and Slow and, most recently, Rolf Dobelli’s The Art of Thinking Clearly, hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of people are discovering the manifold biases that muddle human judgment. So how come there hasn’t been a revolution in good sense and shrewd decision making? Samuel McNerney may have the answer.

3. The Digest nearly won an award this week (hold the applause), reaching finalist position for psychology/neuroscience in the inaugural Science Seeker blogging awards. Many congratulations to all the winners, especially to Aatish Bhatia winner of the psych/neuro category; to psychologist Pete Etchells who won “best post about peer-reviewed research“; and to Virginia Hughes, who won “post of the year” for her superb story about hypersomnolence.

4. The build up to the release of US psychiatry’s updated diagnostic code (DSM-5) continued this week as the BPS Division of Clinical Psychology published a statement calling for a “paradigm shift” in psychiatric diagnosis “away from an outdated disease model” towards “an approach which pays far more attention to the complex range of life experiences of people experiencing mental distress.”

5. The story broke at the Observer on Sunday with an unfortunate spin that implied psychology was at war with psychiatry. Professor Sir Simon Wesseley, a psychiatrist, showed there is in fact a great deal of consensus (“Mindless psychiatry is as unhelpful as brainless psychiatry, and the psychiatrist who ignores the social environment is, well, not a psychiatrist“).

6. How to spot a murderer’s brain (or not).

7. Ed Yong reported on an ambitious and controversial new study of super-brainy participants that’s looking to pin down the genetic influences on intelligence.

8. Do nice guys really finish last?

9. If only there were somewhere you could get an expert, no-nonsense discussion of psychology research that’s been splashed all over the media … hang on, psychologist and writer Tom Stafford has started a new column for The Conversation that does just that – first off, can a poster of staring eyes really deter bike thieves?

10. The 2013 illusion of the year has been chosen – check out the winner and runners up.

Post compiled by Christian Jarrett (@psych_writer) for the BPS Research Digest.

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