Making predictions in the social world

Recording of Presentation


Speaker: Diana Tamir

Bio: Diana studies how people think about their own minds and the minds of other people. She uses a combination of behavioral, machine learning, and neuroimaging methods. She received her Sc.B. in cognitive neuroscience from Brown University, her Ph.D. in psychology from Harvard University, and postdoctoral training at Stanford University before starting as an Assistant Professor of Psychology at Princeton University.

Talk Abstract: The social mind is tailored to the problem of predicting other people. Imagine trying to navigate the social world without understanding that tired people tend to become frustrated, or that mean people tend to lash out. Our social interactions depend on the ability to anticipate others’ actions, and we rely on knowledge about their state (i.e., tired) and traits (i.e., mean) to do so. I will present a multi-layered framework of social cognition that helps to explain how people represent the richness and complexity of others’ minds, and how they use this representation to predict others’ actions. Using both neuroimaging, behavioral, and linguistic analysis methods, I demonstrate how the social mind might leverage both the structure and dynamics of mental state representations to make predictions about the social world.

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