Blog

Dr. Paul Ekman on Torture

August 17, 2015 As seen in the Huffington Post I was approached soon after 9/11 by a senior psychologist, who held office in APA, to participate in the government’s newly developing interrogation program. I declined, although I had already developed techniques for establishing better emotional connections with interviewees, through my work on nonverbal behavior, facial […]

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Paul Ekman Alumni Awards

July 20, 2015 This summer, Dr. Paul Ekman received two awards from two universities dear to his heart: UCSF’s 150th Anniversary Alumni Excellence Award and University of Chicago’s Professional Achievement Award Below are photos from both ceremonies. Paul Ekman is a well-known psychologist and co-discoverer of micro expressions. He was named one of the 100 most influential […]

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The Science of “Inside Out”

July 3, 2015 As seen on the New York Times How Emotions Work FIVE years ago, the writer and director Pete Docter of Pixar reached out to us to talk over an idea for a film, one that would portray how emotions work inside a person’s head and at the same time shape a person’s […]

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A Force for Good

June 22, 2015 A note from Daniel Goleman: As I was interviewing the Dalai Lama for my book A FORCE FOR GOOD: The Dalai Lama’s Vision for Our World, Paul Ekman’s work came up repeatedly. The Dalai Lama places great importance, for one, on Paul’s mapping the emotions – a tool that can help people […]

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8 Myths about Lying

June 8, 2015 by Paul Ekman, Ph.D. as featured on Forbes. Myth #1 – Everyone lies. Not so. Not about serious matters, not about lies which if caught could result in the end of a relationship, employment, freedom, large sums of money or life itself. Those are what I call high stake lies; they are […]

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Investigating Terrorism

Current Political, Legal and Psychological Issues John Pearse, Ph.D Scientific Advisor to Paul Ekman Group January 20, 2015 Unfortunately terrorism is all around us as recent global events continue to demonstrate.  Across America, throughout Europe and around the world people took to the streets to peacefully protest against the terrorist atrocities that had left 17 […]

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#PictureCompassion: What Compassion Looks Like to You!

September 9, 2014 Moving Towards Global Compassion We’ve asked our community what compassion looks like to join in on our movement for Global Compassion by participating in our #PictureCompassion campaign. After looking through many inspiring photos, we’ve selected our top 5 favorites!                   A Note from Dr. Paul Ekman: […]

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Catching Liars

What you need to know August 2014 Science Fiction From a distance of twenty feet, without your knowledge or consent, the surveillance cameras, microphones and physiological sensors apply computer algorithms to process your gait, facial expression, gestures, voice, posture, heart rate, blood pressure and skin temperature — determining within seconds if you are lying or […]

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#AskEkman: How do I become a facial expression expert?

July 2014 The most popular questions we receive at the Paul Ekman Group are questions relating to which courses and universities are best equipped to promote a career in becoming an expert in facial expressions and emotion. The answer to this question depends on what level of education you are seeking, and what topic interests […]

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Is Snowden Lying?

June 2014 Evaluating Truthfulness Many readers have asked whether Snowden was lying in his recent NBC-TV interview, knowing I have worked for the government and corporations spotting lies by how someone behaves. When I attempt to evaluate truthfulness I need to be the one asking the questions, able to ask follow up questions, allowed as […]

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Who Should Know How You Are Feeling?

May 2014 Where you go on the Internet, where you travel on city streets, that and more is all up for grabs. Google? NSA? Walmart? It soon may be possible for them to track your emotions in addition to your whereabouts without your knowledge or consent. No regulations from the government to prevent massive surveillance […]

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Global Compassion and the Nigerian Schoolgirls

May 2014 Why Do We Care? Why Do We Watch? There is nothing which ordinarily might catch our eyes: no one is badly injured, or beautifully dressed, or posing in a sexy way. And no one is asking us to do something: give money; write a letter, or anything else. Usually when we are shown […]

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Spotting Poker Bluffs

May 2014 The game has changed now that TV broadcasts people playing poker. In the old days not a word was spoken, and that tradition continues today in some venues. But lies had to be spotted; bluffs called. I learned about this from winners of the International Poker Tournament held each year in Las Vegas. […]

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Welcome to our new Website!

April 2014 Paul Ekman Group Website I’m Paul Ekman. Welcome to the first post of my blog on our new website!  This past year has been exciting as we’ve improved our training products and created new ways for you to connect with us. Our training tools have been expanded and refined, and our most popular modules […]

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Darwin’s Claim of Universals in Facial Expression Not Challenged

March 2014   Paul Ekman, Emeritus Professor, University of California, San Francisco Dacher Keltner, Professor, University of California, Berkeley   Challenging Darwin Lisa Feldman-Barrett’s recent contribution (New York Times, February 28, 2014) seeks to undermine the science showing universality in the interpretation of facial expressions. In her eyes, recent evidence “challenges[ing] the theory, attributed to […]

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Duping Delight

December, 2009 The Thrill of Lying The Navy warrant officer John Anthony Walker, Jr. was convicted as a spy for the Soviet Union in 1987, and is serving a life sentence. The New York Times said he had been the most damaging spy in history, having helped the Soviets decipher over 200,000 encrypted naval messages. […]

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The Neglected Clue: Mini’s

Hidden Facial Messages November, 2009 Subtle Expressions It was the last day of the Irangate Congressional hearings. Lt. Colonel Oliver North, impressively uniformed, very much in command of the situation, listened attentively as Congressman Lee Hamilton praised North’s many years of dedicated service to the country. Then without warning Hamilton said “but you almost brought […]

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Why Lies Fail – Part 2

Why Do Lies Fail? October, 2009 Feeling Guilty Why do lies fail? I asked people “If you could be absolutely certain that your lover would never find out, would you have a one-night stand with a very attractive person?” About half said “no”. They didn’t differ from those who said “yes” (that they would cheat) […]

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Why Lies Fail – Part 1

Why do lies fail? September 2009 When asking why lies fail, it’s important to remember this: Not all do. “Can’t talk now, just on the way out the door”. “I love your new dress.” “What a great evening, thanks so much.” “Sorry, couldn’t get a babysitter. Which lies fail? Instead of asking why lies fail […]

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Why People Lie

Reasons for Lying March, 2009 Avoiding Punishment “I thought I was only going 55 miles an hour officer” claims the driver speeding at 70 mph. “My wristwatch stopped so I had no idea that I got home 2 hours after my curfew”, says the teenager. Avoiding punishment is the most frequent reason people tell serious […]

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Is Lying Ever Justifiable?

What to Consider when Thinking about Lying February, 2009 Living Lies The terrorist who lies to get on board an airplane believes his lie is justifiable. He doesn’t share values with those to whom he lies, in fact he despises them. The undercover vice squad officer, drug enforcement agent, or counter-intelligence agent, are living lies. […]

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