daniel blumstein in the scientist: wielding fear

Daniel Blumstein writes for Zócalo Public Square: What if we used play to solve the world’s biggest problems?

Ours is a time of reduced civility, heightened political partisanship, and decreased faith in institutions. If we don’t figure out how to engage respectfully, we will all lose out.  Americans need to find another way forward, a way to come together to solve the issues of the day and enable our continued survival as individuals, as a nation, and as a species. We have an audacious suggestion: Turn solving these critical tasks into a game. Let’s take our innate and life-preserving love of play and competition and harness it to change human behavior. By doing so we could improve the world in a way that decades of failed public discourse have not.