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Mahzarin R. Banaji  

Psychologist at Harvard University Known for Popularizing the Concept of Implicit Bias

Professor Mahzarin Banaji studies thinking and feeling as they unfold in social context, with a focus on mental systems that operate in implicit or unconscious mode. She studies social attitudes and beliefs in adults and children, especially those that have roots in group membership. She explores the implications of her work for questions of individual responsibility and social justice in democratic societies. Her current research interests focus on the origins of social cognition and applications of implicit cognition to improve individual decisions and organizational policies.

Mahzarin Banaji taught at Yale from 1986-2002 where she was Ruben Post Halleck Professor of Psychology. Since 2002 she has been Richard Clarke Cabot Professor of Social Ethics in the Department of Psychology at Harvard University while also serving as the first Carol K. Pforzheimer Professor at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, and as the George A. and Helen Dunham Cowan Chair in Human Dynamics at the Santa Fe Institute. Banaji was elected fellow of the Society for Experimental Psychologists, Society for Experimental Social Psychology, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, named Herbert A. Simon Fellow of the American Academy of Political and Social Science and named William James Fellow for a lifetime of significant intellectual contributions to the basic science of psychology by the Association of Psychology Science, an organization of which she also served as President. She also received the Carol and Ed Diener Award for Outstanding Contributions to Social Psychology.

Banaji published "Blindspot: Hidden Biases of Good People," with Anthony Greenwald in 2013. Her Research Interests Include: Implicit social cognition; social development; attitudes & preferences; beliefs & stereotypes; inter group relations; judgment & decision making; person perception; research methods.


Mahzarin R. Banaji
Mahzarin R. Banaji (Boston, United States) Professor of Psychology & Social Ethics, Harvard University
Everyone is biased: Harvard professor’s work reveals we barely know our own minds
Mahzarin R. Banaji was starting out as an assistant professor of psychology at Yale University in the late 1980s, at a time when women professors were scarce enough that administrators eager to offer a class on the psychology of gender turned to her. Banaji had no expertise in the area; her research focused on memory. But she said she would do it, and she quickly found herself inhabiting the overlapping worlds of gender studies and psychology.

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