Parsing Science Newsletter The unpublished stories behind the world's most compelling science, as told by the researchers themselves.

Not-So Big Personality Traits? – Karen Macours

What changes when we attempt to measure personality outside of the contexts where the instruments were developed and validated? In episode 57, we’re joined by Karen Macours from the Paris School of Economics about her research into practical issues with using a popular Big Five personality measures outside of western, educated, industrialized, rich, and democratic settings.

The week's top science news from @ParsingScience ...

Extreme ritual practices

Anthropologists find that participation in rituals involving pain and suffering may lead to greater subjective well-being due to emotional regulation during the ordeal as well as socially communicative elements of ritual performance itself.

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Mid-life cognitive functioning

61 years of data collected from cohort of 18,000 people suggest an association between depression among young adults and cognitive decline in later life.

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The evolution of lifelong learning

Prior guest Nicole Creanza finds that sexual selection may lead to larger syllable and song repertoires in songbird species, possibly explaining why learning a second language is more difficult for adult humans.

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Expanding rent control

Rent control found to be counterproductive as it leads to reduction in housing supply, driving up rental prices.

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Social media addiction

Despite reporting stress induced by social media, people are becoming increasingly addicted to those platforms.

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Soft drinks

Drinking two or more glasses per day of total soft drinks may be associated with higher risk of death from all causes.

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What a waste

People project eating between 71% to 97% of various refrigerated foods, but actually consume half that, largely because of ambiguous "use by" labeling.

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