Incheol Choi, Cultural & Positive Psychology
Cultural & Positive Psychology
Incheol Choi is professor of psychology at Seoul National University. His early career research focus included topics of culture & cognition, culture & self, and decision-making. In 2010, he established the Center for Happiness Studies at Seoul National University and has been investigating various topics of positive psychology.
Transcription of the video
Which domain or aspect of social life will show the most significant positive societal and/or psychological change in response to the pandemic?
Family will become more important than ever. Due to social distancing during this pandemic, our social life has been substantially diminished. However, very ironically, our close relationships, especially family became more crucial in our happiness.
What kind of wisdom will people need to capitalize on the positive societal and/or psychological change after the pandemic?
Work life balance. We need to decrease our work time, increase our family time. Companies should restructure their work culture so that employees can have better work-life balance. I think that’s the wisdom we need.
Which domain or aspect of social life will show the most significant negative societal and/or psychological change in response to the pandemic?
I’m very concerned about the general trust level. Individuals might distance themselves from other individuals, and especially other group members. Consequently, stereotypes, prejudices against other group members might arise. And that’s the area I’m really concerned about.
What kind of wisdom will people need to master to overcome major negative societal and/or psychological changes after the pandemic?
Psychology has long been dealing with these prejudice issues. This pandemic taught us that we are all biological beings, we are all vulnerable to the virus. So regardless of our race, gender, ethnicity, we are the same biological beings. I think that’s the wisdom we need to have.
What piece of wisdom do people need to make it through the pandemic?
We humans are very wise and strong. Historically, we have experienced these types of pandemics multiple times, yet we have successfully overcome these pandemics. So I think it’s very important to believe in our abilities.
Themes discussed in this interview