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🤳🏼📸 Crowdsourced Photo Edition Newsletter 
Welcome to the latest edition of the Human Risk Newsletter, containing lovingly-curated Behavioural Science (BeSci)
inspired content. If you're new to this, then you might want to begin with the Intro to Human Risk.
Missed any of the nine previous editions? Check out the Newsletter archive.

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Coming up in this edition
 
1. A College education scandal is Human Risk in action;

2. A browser plug-in that highlights potential Bias in news websites; 
 
3. A simple BeSci Intervention that helps a heritage society to crowdsource photographs;

4. A newsletter exploring unintended consequences is Something that made me think; and


5. My Something for the weekend recommendation is a podcast called Spectacular Failures.

Human Risk in action

Hot on the heels of an FBI investigation into fraud in the University Admissions System, comes a second scandal involving College funding. 

US readers will know about Operation Varsity Blues, the FBI investigation that uncovered parents who, in order to get their children admitted to top schools, had paid bribes as well as cheated the system by photoshopping photos of them playing sports they had never taken part in and faking SAT scores by having other people take the exams for them. Those unfamiliar with the story can catch up here.

Now a second educational scandal has emerged — this time around access to funding.

A newspaper investigation in Illinois discovered that some parents are giving up legal guardianship of their children during their junior or senior year in high school to someone else — a friend, aunt, cousin or grandparent. This guardianship status then allows the students to declare themselves financially independent of their families so they can qualify for federal, state and university aid.


Even where this is legally permitted, and in many cases it isn't, it is clearly behaviour that goes well beyond what the rules intend. In the past weeks, legislators have been meeting to discuss the situation, though this isn't straightforward.  As this article highlights, making changes in the law risks unintended consequences. 

One representative put it succinctly when questioning an official "so we're here only because we want to fix the moral compass of people?"


Ethics is increasingly becoming a critical factor in Human Risk.  Fortunately, there are some BeSci-powered ways of making it more likely people will do the right thing.  To find out more get in touch.
My thanks to friend of the newsletter, Tom Hardin for highlighting this to me. If you've not heard of Tom, also known as Tipper X, then do visit his website to learn his astonishing story. And look out for an interview with him on the soon to launch Human Risk podcast.
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Bi-Weekly Cognitive Bias

A browser plugin that helps identify bias in news sources, could be the first step in fighting #fakenews.
Normally in this section, I highlight a particular Cognitive Bias that impacts human decision-making.  However, I was so intrigued by a web browser plugin called Nobias, that I thought I would share that with you instead.

Many of us get our news through social media and while we may be aware of the dangers that poses, it is sometimes difficult to know what we can trust. Nobias seeks to provide more context and insights into the headlines and articles we see before we click on them.
 
The insights include biases within articles and headlines, as well as the credibility of the author, allowing us to be more selective in what we read.
If we're more critical about what we look at, it should help train the algorithms that determine which news articles we see. 

Nobias is currently available for Chrome and Firefox browsers. It mainly covers US news sources, but they're adding more on a regular basis.
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A BeSci Intervention

A charity that supports environmental and heritage conservation has developed a clever way to crowdsource photographs to help it with a project.
The National Trust (NT) is a UK charity whose aim, in their own words, is to "look after the places that make our world a bit more special".  In practice, this means preserving locations that are of environmental or historical significance. 

A recently launched NT project called Shifting Shores aims to monitor the impact of weather on the UK's coastline. To allow them to do this, they created a rather smart intervention that encourages people visiting specific locations to take pictures and post them on social media:
It seems to be working well, as a Twitter search for NTshiftingshores shows;  though there are more tweets highlighting the intervention than contain pictures of the coastline!

For an even more fascinating use of crowdsourced photographs, I highly recommend this article that explains how in 1942 the BBC put out an appeal for people to send in pictures of France to help prepare for the D Day landings. Over 10 million holiday photo and postcards, hotel brochures, letters and guidebooks were submitted. 
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Something that made me think

A newsletter that explores Unintended Consequences has really inspired me to think, so I'm sharing it with you.
Paul Orlando is, amongst other things, an Adjunct Professor of Entrepreneurship at the University of Southern California. He also publishes a newsletter called Unintended Consequences that looks at what he delightfully calls "second-order thinking".

In the latest edition entitled Do We Create Shoplifters, Paul explores the unintended consequences of technological advancement and the unseen value that human engagement can bring to processes.

By reading it, you'll learn about the unexpected downsides of driverless cars and what happened when
these accounting clerks were replaced by Excel:
And you'll discover why automation might be encouraging shoplifting.

Paul's newsletter is always a thought-provoking read. He may explore second-order thinking, but his is very much of the first-order. Subscribe here and follow @porlando on Twitter.
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Something for the weekend

A podcast that looks at business failures is about as Human Risk relevant as podcasts can get.
Business failures usually involve some form of Human Risk.  So I was intrigued when I stumbled across this podcast:
I could describe it myself, but I'll let the producers do the job for me:

"Corporate crookedness. Family feuding. Hilariously half-baked decisions. Host Lauren Ober tackles some of the most spectacular business failures of all time, and what could have been done to avoid them. Some of these stories are shocking. Some are funny. Some are just downright sad. But each one will give you a totally new perspective on big business… and big failure."
I'm not just recommending it because of the subject matter. It's an absolute joy to listen to and the host Lauren Ober is sassy, self-deprecating and supremely engaging.  You can follow @oberandout on Twitter and download Spectacular Failures wherever you get your podcasts.
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Incase you missed it...

Since the last newsletter, I rounded off my blog series on The Five Rules of Human Risk, which is designed to help you think practically about using BeSci to manage Human Risk.  Click here to see the entire series or here to go straight to Part Five.

Readers responsible for training might also be interested in Five Things Compliance can learn from Airline Safety Briefings

Finally, if you're not following @humanriskblog on Twitter, then you won't have seen my link to Urban Nudges, a site that highlights BeSci interventions in urban settings.

That's it for this time. Feedback, as ever, welcome.

Christian

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The newsletter is brought to you by Human Risk, a Training & Consulting Firm that specialises in the deployment of BeSci in the fields of Risk, Compliance, Conduct and Culture
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