Ms Patricia Andrews Fearon (2017)
My passion for the science of perspective-taking and cognitive complexity emerges from my background as a journalist. This short career afforded me invaluable opportunities to travel in over 40 countries, work with companies like CNN, TIME Inc., and NGOs like Room to Read, and even to cycle across France making the documentary “The Tour de Farm.” However, it soon became apparent that the most important stories and messages fail to incite change when they are trapped in echo chambers. Turning all of my energies towards the science of listening and perspective-taking, I joined the IC Thinking Research Team based in Cambridge and have had the opportunity to collaborate on studies and intervention designs that tackle sectarianism, violent extremism, and other forms of intergroup conflict in Bosnia, Pakistan and Scotland. I have also recently had the opportunity to study social and cognitive psychology as a post-baccalaureate scholar at UC Berkeley in the Emotion and Emotion Regulation Laboratory. As a certified conflict mediator in San Francisco, I mediate disputes between police officers and citizens and between community members through the Department of Police Accountability and Community Boards. In my PhD research at Cambridge, I look forward to exploring the ways we can learn to listen in even the most hostile environments. I am thrilled and humbled by this opportunity to join the Gates Cambridge community, and hope to share a good cup of tea with you all soon.