Blog

Curiosity and Bioengineering at UPenn

A new collaboration between the Center for Curiosity and the Department of Bioengineering at the University of Pennsylvania informs STEAM initiatives, hosts a symposium on “The Network Neuroscience of Curiosity,” and refocuses pedagogy on curiosity and creativity.
Speakers at the fall symposium on The Network Neuroscience of Curiosity include Dr. Danielle Bassett, Dr. David Danks (Carnegie Mellon University), Dr. Jacqueline Gottlieb (Columbia University), and Dr. Celeste Kidd (University of Rochester). The long-term project has also started conversations around reinvigorating the Bioengineering curriculum with an emphasis on student curiosity and creativity.
For more information, see

Global Study on Curiosity in the Workplace

Although 8 in 10 employees say curiosity is an important work trait, just one in five say they are curious, according to an international stugy by Merck. “Innovation and technological progress do not appear out of the blue. They always develop out of a person’s sense of curiosity about something new. Scientific curiosity and the joy of discovery are thus our most important resources when it comes to finding answers to global challenges such as the aging of our society or population growth,” says Stefan Oschmann, Chairman of the Executive Board and CEO of Merck. “That’s why curiosity should be a key aspect of our everyday work.”

Read the State of Curiosity Report here.

Curiosity at Core of Human Existence

Dr Paul C Holinger writes in Psychology  Today that curiosity is at the core of human existence. “The human brain is stimulus-seeking. We want to enhance the interest affect, our curiosity, in order to learn, to discover, to adapt…. The responses of caregivers to infants and children can either enhance interest or constrict it. Similarly, later in life, teachers or bosses can stimulate or restrict interest and curiosity. Creativity and discoveries come from curiosity—that is, interest-excitement. Reactions such as fear, or surprise, or disgust can be shifted to interest, thus enhancing learning.”

Read the complete article in Psychology Today here.

Ted@CERN: Ripples of Curiosity

On Saturday 5 November 2016 CERN will host the fourth edition of TEDxCERN under the theme ‘ripples of curiosity.’ Topics include artificial intelligence, DNA editing, biotechnology, global literacy, DIY science, drones, oceanography, as well as dark matter and gravitational waves.

“One of CERN’s missions is to connect with people across the globe to inspire scientific curiosity and understanding,” said Charlotte Warakaulle, CERN’s Director for International Relations. “Behind every breakthrough, there is a brave idea from a curious person. With this year’s TEDx, we celebrate innovators from all fields who inspire us with their stories of how curiosity creates ripples that can change our world.”

For more information, see

Deconstructing intellectual curiosity

A new study in the Journal of Personality and Individual Differences traced six factors across three measures of intellectual curiosity (IC). Typical Intellectual Engagement measures all factors except Deprivation. Need for Cognition (18-item) measures Intellectual Avoidance and Problem Solving. Epistemic Curiosity largely measures Deprivation. Schmid–Leiman rotation indicates that Reading may not fit within the IC domain.

 

Deconstructing intellectual curiosity

AAAS President seeks increasing support for curiosity-driven research

The president of the American Association for the Advancement of Science argues for the value of curiosity-driven science pursued without regard for immediate application. Barbara Schaal, dean of the faculty of arts and sciences at Washington University in St. Louis, and president of AAAS, called for more effective communication and public engagement by scientists in explaining their work, both to policy-makers and to the general public.

AAAS President seeks increasing support for curiosity-driven research

Shopping under the influence of curiosity: How retailers use mystery to drive purchase motivation

A new study examines curiosity’s role in influencing consumer behavior. Study 1 reveals that mystery appeals create more curiosity than other affective states, and that curiosity predicts purchase motivation via a direct path. Exploring the optimal level of information needed to maximize curiosity, study 1 finds that participants are more curious when given moderate information, over minimal information. Next, study 2 demonstrates that shopping in an actively curious state can impact consumer outcomes via an indirect path that is mediated by consumer evaluation of the mystery appeal. This research is the first to identify curiosity as the affective state that is primarily triggered by mystery appeals, and to explain how curiosity directly and indirectly impacts consumer purchase motivation.

Shopping under the influence of curiosity: How retailers use mystery to drive purchase motivation

The Penultimate Curiosity

When young children first begin to ask ‘why?’ they embark on a journey with no final destination. The need to make sense of the world as a whole is an ultimate curiosity that lies at the root of all human religions. It has, in many cultures, shaped and motivated a more down to earth scientific interest in the physical world, which could therefore be described as penultimate curiosity. These two manifestations of curiosity have a history of connection that goes back deep into the human past. Tracing that history all the way from cave painting to quantum physics, this book (a collaboration between a painter and a physical scientist that uses illustrations throughout the narrative) sets out to explain the nature of the long entanglement between religion and science: the ultimate and the penultimate curiosity.

Penultimate_Curiosity

The Penultimate Curiosity: How Science Swims in the Slipstream of Ultimate Questions