Writing

I write and speak about science, technology, psychology, work, and business for a variety of audiences. Want me to write for you or speak to your group? Contact me!

PERSONALITY TESTS
The bulk of my writing focuses on the business adoption of personality tests. My dissertation, “Personality, Incorporated,” traces a history of corporate personality testing from the 1960s to the 1990s. It is now available online.

In the wake of the public attention on Cambridge Analytica’s use of personality tests, I wrote about the long corporate history of personality tests for Slate and The Conversation , in a piece that was picked up by the National Post.

My refereed article, “Temperamental Workers,” published in History of Psychology, uses a case study of a now-forgotten 1930s personality test, the Humm-Wadsworth Temperament Scale, to tell a pre-history of “emotional intelligence” as a valued trait in business.

WORK, MOTIVATION, AND ‘DO WHAT YOU LOVE’

I dug into the endearing legacy of Abraham Maslow’s “hierarchy of needs,” focusing on its influence in business, in the Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences.
For Aeon, I connected the hierarchy of needs to broader social ideas about the work ethic and the hidden darkside of “do what you love.”

I wrote a guest post for Hidden Persuaders, a blog on the history of Cold War psychology, which examined how workplace motivational psychologists faced charges of “brainwashing.”

TECHNOLOGY AND SOCIETY

I write about the interactions of technology and society, especially focusing on technology and business. My piece, “From the Intuitive Human to the Intuitive Computer,” was published by Technology’s Stories as part of a panel awarded the Best Early Career Panel at the Society for the History of Technology.

My article, “Managing Intuition,” was published in Business History Review as part of an invited roundtable on postwar American management.

Funded by the Association for Computing Machinery History Fellowship, I am researching the intersections of psychology and computing. I’m exploring how psychological tests were converted to computerized and online versions; the controversies over algorithms used to score tests; and what such histories tells us about the present concerns around bias and algorithms.

DIVERSITY & INCLUSION

I spoke to Innovate Niagara’s Women in STEM series about the long history of women in STEM, as well as the continued barriers to women’s participation in the field.

MATERIAL CULTURE & ARCHIVE REPORTS

As part of my involvement with the University of Toronto Scientific Instrument Collection, I wrote about their fascinating collection of psychological tests for their online exhibit.

After researching in the Hagley business history archives, I wrote about my findings in a piece called “The Manager as Motivator.”

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