Category Archives: art

The World’s First Empathy Museum

One of my ambitions is to found the world’s first Empathy Museum – an experiential and conversational adventure space for stepping into other people’s shoes. I’ve just written an article at the Virgin Unite blog where I describe my vision for the museum as both a physical space and a digital community. You might, for […]

Also posted in conversation, empathy, empathy through experience | 10 Comments

New book out today: EMPATHY

Today is launch day for my new book, Empathy: A Handbook for Revolution. More than ten years in the making, I explore the six habits of highly empathic people, and how stepping into other people’s shoes can both transform everyday life and create radical social change. You can find out more about the book here. […]

Also posted in emotions, empathy, ethics, family, history | Leave a comment

Empathy Library launches today!

Today I’m pleased and proud to announce the launch of my new project, the world’s first online Empathy Library. It’s a digital treasure house where you will find inspiring and powerful books and films that catapult your imagination into other people’s lives. There are Top Ten Charts, you can browse by themes like love or […]

Also posted in conversation, empathy, empathy library, empathy through education, film, literature, videos | 2 Comments

The Power of Outrospection

What do Mr Spock, Che Guevara and Gandhi have in common? They all appear in my new RSA Animate, The Power of Outrospection, about how empathy can create radical social change. If you want to know more about my ideas on empathy, a good place to start is my book The Wonderbox: Curious Histories of […]

Also posted in conversation, empathy, ethics, history, politics, psychology | 11 Comments

Can reading a novel change the world?

‘It was through books that I first realised there were other worlds beyond my own; first imagined what it might be like to be another person,’ wrote novelist Julian Barnes in a recent Guardian essay. It’s an enticing thought that reading fiction might help us escape the straitjacket of our egos and expand our moral […]

Also posted in belief, empathy, empathy through education, empathy through experience, ethics, family, history, literature, love, philosophy, religion | 2 Comments

High Achiever or Wide Achiever?

We should all be worried about the £20 note, which features the eighteenth-century economist Adam Smith staring fixedly at workers toiling in a pin factory. Smith argued that this factory would produce far more pins if workers specialised in just one or two tasks – such as straightening the wire or sticking on the head […]

Also posted in history, money, work | 3 Comments

Why creativity is not about originality

Michelangelo was bad news for creativity In this interview with bestselling novelist Fiona Robyn featured on her blog Writing Our Way Home, I discuss my approach to the process of creative writing and thinking, and suggest why creativity is not about originality, and how musician Brian Eno can help us think more adventurously.  Fiona Robyn: What drives […]

Also posted in creativity, empathy, ethics, interviews, work | 1 Comment

The radical origins of compassion

So you think compassion means being nice to people? Sure, its Latin root literally means ‘to suffer with another’, which is pretty close to the psychological concept of ‘affective empathy’, where you share in or mirror someone else’s emotional state. When I feel your pain or suffering, I may well do something to help you […]

Also posted in empathy through experience, ethics, film, history, religion | 1 Comment

Empathy with the enemy

In the spring of 472 BC the people of Athens queued up to see the latest play written by Aeschylus, the founder of Greek tragedy. The Persians was an unusual production, and not only because it was based on an historical event rather than the usual legends of the gods. What must have really shocked […]

Also posted in empathy through education, ethics, film, history, literature, peace building, politics | 1 Comment

Why every city needs an Empathy Museum

Just as the world’s major cities now have Holocaust Museums, it is time they all established Empathy Museums too. Their purpose would be nothing less than generating a new global culture of empathy by creating adventure spaces where you can explore how to view life from the perspective of other people.

A typical Empathy Museum would not house dusty exhibits inside glass cases. Instead, it would be an exciting and intriguing playground rivalling the finest galleries and tourist attractions that the city has to offer. On rainy Sunday afternoons you might wander through the Empathy Museum with a few friends or your mother-in-law. During the week it is likely to be filled with children on school excursions and inquisitive visitors from countries where the ideal of empathy remains embryonic. The Empathy Museum will ignite the imagination just like the first public museums in the seventeenth century, whose collections of curiosities revealed the wonders of nature and human civilization for the first time.

Also posted in design, empathy through conversation, empathy through education, empathy through experience, nature, public policy, travel | 9 Comments
  • Welcome to OUTROSPECTION, my blog on empathy and the art of living. You'll find articles, interviews and news on the fundamental questions of how to live, with an emphasis on outrospection, which is about discovering who we are by stepping outside ourselves and exploring the lives of other people and cultures.

  • Current highlights

    Front cover of 'The Wonderbox' by Roman KrznaricFront cover of Empathy by Roman Krznaric


  • Empathy Library

  • New Outrospection blog articles

  • Sign up to receive weekly email notification of new postings.

  • Upcoming events and talks

  • Topics

  • Archives

  • Meta