The New York TimesThe New York Times

How to change minds? A study makes the case for talking it out

By Virginia Hughes

17 Sep 2022 · 5 min read

Editor's Note

The New York Times reports on a new study that shows that conversation among a group of people aligns brain activity—revealing a lot about how we form consensus.

Co-workers stuck on a Zoom call, deliberating a new strategy for a crucial project. Roommates at the kitchen table, arguing about how to split utility bills fairly. Neighbors at a city meeting, debating how to pay for street repairs.

We’ve all been there — in a group, trying our best to get everyone on the same page. It’s arguably one of the most important and common undertakings in human societies. But reaching agreement can be excruciating.

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