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In this engaging keynote address, MIT Behavioral Economist Dan Ariely discusses the effects of money on human behavior. Speaking at Burning Man, a creative festival where money is not allowed, Ariely’s message is particularly dynamic.
Ariely argues that the moment money becomes a part of something, relationships change. He states with certainty that adding money to an equation demotivates people and alters reactions. From an economic point of view, therefore, gifts are incredibly odd. If we ask people for a favor, they are likely to be willing to volunteer and help out. However, once we are buying someone’s assistance, the dynamic of the exchange is altered. The psychological effect of money on behavior is somewhat jarring.