Psychology of Social Design Talk

Last wednesday I gave a 45 minute talk at UXWeek 2007 (photos) called The Psychology of Social Design. Here are the slides:

Download PDF of The Psychology of Social Design

Last wednesday I gave a 45 minute talk at UXWeek 2007 (photos) called The Psychology of Social Design. Here are the slides:

Download PDF of The Psychology of Social Design

I’ve also created a set of resources and links for the talk at Del.icio.us:

http://del.icio.us/bokardo/uxweek/

My focus in the talk was to expose several psychological frameworks that can be applied to social design. The first one is Kurt Lewin’s famous equation: B=ƒ(P,E) which articulates the primary tension in social psychology: that both an individual’s personality (P) and their environment (E) affect their behavior (B)…btw: that was the only equation I’ve ever shown in a talk and will probably be the last.

Here’s an high-level outline:

  1. Kurt Lewin’s Equation as the central tension in social psychology
  2. Abraham Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs as a precursor to the Del.icio.us Lesson
  3. Peter Kollock’s 4 motivations for contributing
  4. Robert Axelrod’s 3 necessary conditions to cooperate
  5. Duncan Watts’ study on social influence in interfaces

On the Web, of course, our environment is largely the interface we’re using in addition to the social actions that are occurring elsewhere. In many cases the interface is the only evidence we have that anything is happening at all.

The talk went well, I think. I got some really positive feedback about it from attendees, and some great questions afterward that took the discussion further.

I know that it’s not easy to follow a talk by just looking at the slide-deck, but if you have any feedback or comments, I would love to hear them.

Published: August 20th, 2007

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