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Empathy is declining

Human Centred Design (Design thinking) is about solving people’s problems and creating better future for ourselves and others. To do so, we need to really understand other people feelings and thinking. At its core, Human Centred Design is about having empathy for others.

As human beings we are hardwired for empathy. It doesn’t mean we are born with a fixed amount of empathy. It’s a unique skill that can and need to be nurtured in children and adults. Even though empathy is such an important skill to have, it is not getting the attention it deserves.

As our communication shift more and more to electronic ways, it is getting difficult to identify other people’s emotions and we can’t read their facial expressions and body language. This, in turn, makes it more difficult to be empathetic towards others.

A research on Empathy in younger generation shows that this capability is declining fast. A big driver for this decline is the increasing use of electronic messages as a mean for communication. To develop empathy, we need to have face to face interactions. We can’t learn to be empathetic by communicating through txt messages, emails and emojis.

So what can we do about it?

A program developed by Glittering Minds is impacting the level of empathy in primary school students. Observations on student’s behaviour show higher level of empathy. For example, listening respectfully to others, considering other people needs and more.

If you want to learn more about it, sign to our newsletter via our website as the coming one is all about empathy and how to cultivate it.


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