Abstract: In this talk, based on his new book “Experience on Demand: What Virtual Reality is, How it Works, and What it Can Do,” Bailenson draws upon two decades spent researching the psychological effects of virtual reality (VR) to help people understand this powerful new tool. He describes the profound ways this technology can be put to use—not to distance ourselves from reality, but to enrich our lives and influence us to treat others, the environment, and ourselves better.
Speaker Bio: Jeremy Bailenson is founding director of Stanford University’s Virtual Human Interaction Lab, Thomas More Storke Professor in the Department of Communication, Professor (by courtesy) of Education, Professor (by courtesy) Program in Symbolic Systems, a Senior Fellow at the Woods Institute for the Environment, and a Faculty Leader at Stanford’s Center for Longevity. He earned a B.A. cum laude from the University of Michigan in 1994 and a Ph.D. in cognitive psychology from Northwestern University in 1999. He spent four years at the University of California, Santa Barbara as a Post-Doctoral Fellow and then an Assistant Research Professor.
Bailenson studies the psychology of Virtual Reality (VR), in particular how virtual experiences lead to changes in perceptions of self and others. His lab builds and studies systems that allow people to meet in virtual space, and explores the changes in the nature of social interaction. His most recent research focuses on how VR can transform education, environmental conservation, empathy, and health.
He consults pro bono on VR policy for a wide variety of government agencies, has published numerous papers and opinion pieces, and has produced three VR documentary experiences which were official selections at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2016 and 2017. His new book, “Experience on Demand” will be published by Norton in January.