Lara Aknin (Associate Professor, Simon Fraser University)

Monday, October 26, 2020 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm
Online - Zoom

"Does generous spending lead to happiness? An RRR adventure"

Does helping others feel good? Humans are often painted as cold, selfish, and solitary creatures. Yet, a growing body of research demonstrates that people not only engage in generous behaviour, but can derive pleasure from doing so. In this talk, I’ll briefly present some of my past work demonstrating that one form of generous behaviour—spending money on others (prosocial spending)—can lead to greater well-being than spending money on oneself. I'll draw upon data from participants ranging in age, location, and personal histories. Building on this, I’ll share findings from a recent Registered Replication Report utilizing new best methodological practices to examine the emotional rewards of prosocial spending. Finally, I’ll discuss how this recent research re-ignited my love for social psychology, and renewed my hope for both science and humanity.

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