Altruism seems to be built into our DNA. From the founding of thousands of public libraries by Andrew Carnegie a century ago, the recent mass emergence of social entrepreneurs, and the dawn of the “effective altruism” movement, “making a difference” is part of what gives us purpose. Yet not all altruism is created equal. In labs around the world, studies are being conducted to better understand why we give, what we can learn from our mistakes, and how we can use evidence-based methods to more effectively help our fellow man.
In his book, now out in paperback, A Path Appears: Transforming Lives, Creating Opportunity, Nicholas Kristof discusses our approach to altruism from a communal, practical, and neurological standpoint. Co-written with Sheryl WuDunn, fellow Pulitzer Prize winning journalist and Kristof’s wife, the book focuses on individual stories of service – from a doctor in Somalia fighting for women’s empowerment in the face of militant extremists, to a former Navy SEAL giving his fellow veterans a new, state-side mission. Kristof also speaks with some of the leading experts within the science of giving, revealing the positive and powerful ways service affects us, and the neurological basis for why and how we give.
A regular columnist at The New York Times and contributor to CNN, Kristof is a two-time Pulitzer Prize winning journalist and author. He’s co-authored four books with his wife and fellow Pulitzer Prize winning journalist, Sheryl WuDunn. Next month, Kristof will be speaking at the Idaho Women’s Charitable Foundation Symposium on Oct. 16, 2018.