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27 mins

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Tim Harford is a world-renowned behavioural economist, an award-winning Financial Times columnist, and a BBC broadcaster. Described as ‘Britain’s Malcolm Gladwell,’ and by the New Statesman as ‘perhaps the best popular economics writer in the world’ he brings storytelling, humour and intelligence to an oft-maligned discipline.

Here he looks at the human propensity to avoid adversity – and the wonderful things that can happen when we resist that psychological urge.

Tim is a great raconteur and makes his points through stories, so we haven’t broken down his session as notes as we have many of the other sessions. Below is a brief outline of what you will hear, but we recommend you watch the video for full effect.

Illlustration of a piano with a quote from Tim Harford

(timecode 00.14 – 07.20)

How a seventeen-year-old German teenager and one of the best jazz musicians on the planet created unexpected genius from a terrible situation.

(timecode 7.20 – 15.00)

People do their best work in adversity all the time. Why does this happen? Why is the shock of adversity so powerful?

(timecode 15.13 – 18.35)

How about the psychological component, what’s going on there?

(timecode 18.35 – 22.50)

How does this relate to the way teams work and what makes them successful?

(timecode 22.55 – end)

A lesson from Brian Eno on comfort zones.


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