Academics and artists alike praise virtual reality (VR) as the ultimate empathic medium which allows its users to walk a mile in another’s shoes and open the doors of perception. Numerous evidence-based studies stemming from social neuroscience and cyberpsychology have shown virtual reality’s potential for transforming attitudes and behavior.

This article, by leading social entrepreneur Dr Alexandra Ivanovitch, explores how VR works in practice, the cognitive and psychological mechanisms underlying VR, and its potential application in the field of peacebuilding and conflict resolution. She reviews cutting-edge scientific research on how VR creates a “body ownership illusion” and “embodied cognition”, which help us transcend neurophysiological limitations inherent to our own point of view, and to adopt the perspective of another human being. The article also discusses experiments that show VR can reduce biases, build empathy and encourage prosocial behavior. Dr Ivanovitch calls for collaboration between technology, science and art to identify ways that immersive technology can be used to strengthen peace.

Click this link to read: Virtual Reality: The Frontier of Peacemaking.

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