Empathy in Stormy Times - Empathy Conference Day 1

The scientific definition of empathy has little to do with the meaning attributed to it in colloquial usage, preferably as a kind of soft soap. Social neuroscience distinguishes empathy as having 1. an emotional-intuitive (empathy), 2. an intellectual-cognitive (Theory of Mind), and 3. a behavioral aspect (actual helping). Empathy is not innate; what is innate is the ability to acquire it. Its acquisition has been the evolutionary ticket to success for humans, but requires that humans experience empathy themselves postnatally and in their younger years. Outside of therapeutic or medical contexts, the use of empathy must involve critical examination of the other person and the expectation of reciprocity. Empathy and harshness - up to and including the use of force against lawbreakers - are not mutually exclusive.

Prof. Dr. Joachim Bauer is a neuroscientist, physician, psychotherapist, and author of books such as How We Become Who We Are - The Emergence of the Human Self Through Resonance (2019) and The Empathic Gene (2021). He holds a visiting professorship at the International Psychoanalytic University Berlin and runs, also in Berlin, a medical practice.
In 2022, Cicero magazine ranked him among the most influential intellectuals in the German-speaking world for the fourth time in a row.

As part of the International Science Festival - Geist Heidelberg
In the context of the
12th Empathy Conference

Click here for the second day of the Empathy Conference (Sat, Nov 05, from 10am).

Both conference days (Fri, 04 & Sat, 05 November) can be purchased individually or as a Combiticket can be booked. Please note the different price levels.

The complete conference program as well as the contents of the individual lectures can be found in our conference flyer.

The event will take place at the DAI Heidelberg and in parallel via dai HOME Livestream.
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Members of the DAI Circle of Friends enjoy the dai HOME free of charge. Please send us an email to if you have not yet received information about the dai HOME.

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Date: 04.11.2022

Time: 20:00


Empathy: indication, risks and side effects

Joachim Bauer

Hybrid event