October 29, 2015 – Functional Brain Imaging Predicts Public Health Campaign Success
It’s a frustrating fact that most people would live longer if only they could make small changes: stop smoking, eat better, exercise more, practice safe sex. Health messaging is one important way to change behavior on a large scale, but while a successful campaign can improve millions of lives, a failed one can be an enormous waste of resources.
“The problem is that people are notoriously bad at guessing which ads will be effective and ineffective at changing their behavior,” says Emily Falk, Associate Professor of Communication at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania.
So Falk and her team take a different approach: They look inside people’s brains.