Empathy and Active Listening



Empathy is the capacity to understand or feel what another person is experiencing from within their frame of reference, that is, the capacity to place oneself in another’s position.[1] Definitions of empathy encompass a broad range of emotional states. Types of empathy include cognitive empathy, emotional (or affective) empathy, somatic, and spiritual empathy.[2][3][4]


The English word empathy is derived from the Ancient Greek ἐμπάθεια (empatheia, meaning “physical affection or passion”).[5] This, in turn, comes from ἐν (en, “in, at”) and πάθος (pathos, “passion” or “suffering”).[6] Hermann Lotze and Robert Vischer adapted the term to create the German Einfühlung (“feeling into”). Edward B. Titchener translated Einfühlung into English as “empathy” in 1909.[7][8][9] In modern Greek: εμπάθεια may mean, depending on context, prejudicemalevolencemalice, or hatred.[10]



Empathy definitions encompass a broad range of phenomena, including caring for other people and having a desire to help them; experiencing emotions that match another person’s emotions; discerning what another person is thinking or feeling;[11] and making less distinct the differences between the self and the other.[12]

Having empathy can include having the understanding that there are many factors that go into decision making and cognitive thought processes. Past experiences have an influence on the decision making of today. Understanding this allows a person to have empathy for individuals who sometimes make illogical decisions to a problem that most individuals would respond with an obvious response. Broken homes, childhood trauma, lack of parenting and many other factors can influence the connections in the brain which a person uses to make decisions in the future.[13] According to Martin Hoffman everyone is born with the capability of feeling empathy.[14]

Since empathy involves understanding the emotional states of other people, the way it is characterized is derived from the way emotions themselves are characterized. If, for example, emotions are taken to be centrally characterized by bodily feelings, then grasping the bodily feelings of another will be central to empathy. On the other hand, if emotions are more centrally characterized by a combination of beliefs and desires, then grasping these beliefs and desires will be more essential to empathy. The ability to imagine oneself as another person is a sophisticated imaginative process. However, the basic capacity to recognize emotions is probably innate[15] and may be achieved unconsciously. Yet it can be trained[16] and achieved with various degrees of intensity or accuracy.

Empathy necessarily has a “more or less” quality. The paradigm case of an empathic interaction, however, involves a person communicating an accurate recognition of the significance of another person’s ongoing intentional actions, associated emotional states, and personal characteristics in a manner that the recognized person can tolerate. Recognitions that are both accurate and tolerable are central features of empathy.[17][18]

The human capacity to recognize the bodily feelings of another is related to one’s imitative capacities, and seems to be grounded in an innate capacity to associate the bodily movements and facial expressions one sees in another with the proprioceptive feelings of producing those corresponding movements or expressions oneself.[19] Humans seem to make the same immediate connection between the tone of voice and other vocal expressions and inner feeling.

Distinctions between empathy and related concepts

Compassion and sympathy are terms associated with empathy. Definitions vary, contributing to the challenge of defining empathy. Compassion is often defined as an emotion people feel when others are in need, which motivates people to help them. Sympathy is a feeling of care and understanding for someone in need. Some include in sympathy an empathic concern, a feeling of concern for another, in which some scholars include the wish to see them better off or happier.[20]

Empathy is distinct also from pity and emotional contagion.[20] Pity is a feeling that one feels towards others that might be in trouble or in need of help as they cannot fix their problems themselves, often described as “feeling sorry” for someone. Emotional contagion is when a person (especially an infant or a member of a mob) imitatively “catches” the emotions that others are showing without necessarily recognizing this is happening.[21]

Alexithymia describes a deficiency in understanding, processing or describing emotions in oneself, unlike empathy which is about someone else.[22]


Empathy is generally divided into two major components:[23]

Affective empathy

Affective empathy, also called emotional empathy:[24] the capacity to respond with an appropriate emotion to another’s mental states.[23] Our ability to empathize emotionally is based on emotional contagion:[24] being affected by another’s emotional or arousal state.[25]

Affective empathy can be subdivided into the following scales:[23][26]

  • Empathic concern: sympathy and compassion for others in response to their suffering.[23][27][28]
  • Personal distress: self-centered feelings of discomfort and anxiety in response to another’s suffering.[23][27][28]There is no consensus regarding whether personal distress is a basic form of empathy or instead does not constitute empathy.[27] There may be a developmental aspect to this subdivision. Infants respond to the distress of others by getting distressed themselves; only when they are 2 years old do they start to respond in other-oriented ways, trying to help, comfort and share.[27]

Cognitive empathy

Cognitive empathy: the capacity to understand another’s perspective or mental state.[29][23][30] The terms social cognitionperspective-takingtheory of mind, and mentalizing are often used synonymously, but due to a lack of studies comparing theory of mind with types of empathy, it is unclear whether these are equivalent.[31]

Although science has not yet agreed upon a precise definition of these constructs, there is consensus about this distinction.[32][33] Affective and cognitive empathy are also independent from one another; someone who strongly empathizes emotionally is not necessarily good in understanding another’s perspective.[34][35]

Cognitive empathy can be subdivided into the following scales:[23][26]

  • Perspective-taking: the tendency to spontaneously adopt others’ psychological perspectives.[23][36]
  • Fantasy: the tendency to identify with fictional characters.[23]
  • Tactical (or “strategic”) empathy: the deliberate use of perspective-taking to achieve certain desired ends.[37]

Although measures of cognitive empathy include self-report questionnaires and behavioral measures, a 2019 meta analysis[38] found only a negligible association between self report and behavioral measures, suggesting that people are generally not able to accurately assess their own cognitive empathy abilities.

Somatic empathy


Since all definitions of empathy involve an element of caring for others, all distinctions between egoism and empathy fail at least for beings lacking self-awareness. Since the first mammals lacked a self-aware distinction between self and other, as shown by most mammals failing at mirror tests, the first mammals or anything more evolutionarily primitive than them cannot have had a context of default egoism requiring an empathy mechanism to be transcended. However, there are numerous examples in artificial intelligence research showing that simple reactions can carry out de facto functions the agents have no concept of, so this does not contradict evolutionary explanations of parental care. However, such mechanisms would be unadapted to self-other distinction and beings already dependent on some form of behavior benefitting each other or their offspring would never be able to evolve a form of self-other distinction that necessitated evolution of specialized non-preevolved and non-preevolvable mechanisms for retaining empathic behavior in the presence of self-other distinction, and so a fundamental neurological distinction between egoism and empathy cannot exist in any species.[47][48]

Ontogenetic development

By the age of two years, children normally begin to display the fundamental behaviors of empathy by having an emotional response that corresponds with another person’s emotional state.[49] Even earlier, at one year of age, infants have some rudiments of empathy, in the sense that they understand that, just like their own actions, other people’s actions have goals.[50][51][52] Sometimes, toddlers will comfort others or show concern for them at as early an age as two. Also during the second year, toddlers will play games of falsehood or “pretend” in an effort to fool others, and this requires that the child know what others believe before he or she can manipulate those beliefs.[53] In order to develop these traits, it is essential to expose your child to face-to-face interactions and opportunities and lead them away from a sedentary lifestyle.

According to researchers at the University of Chicago who used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), children between the ages of 7 and 12 years appear to be naturally inclined to feel empathy for others in pain. Their findings[54] are consistent with previous fMRI studies of pain empathy with adults. The research also found additional aspects of the brain were activated when youngsters saw another person intentionally hurt by another individual, including regions involved in moral reasoning.[55]

Despite being able to show some signs of empathy, including attempting to comfort a crying baby, from as early as 18 months to two years, most children do not show a fully fledged theory of mind until around the age of four.[56] Theory of mind involves the ability to understand that other people may have beliefs that are different from one’s own, and is thought to involve the cognitive component of empathy.[29] Children usually become capable of passing “false belief” tasks, considered to be a test for a theory of mind, around the age of four. Individuals with autism often find using a theory of mind very difficult (e.g. the Sally–Anne test ).[57][58]

Empathetic maturity is a cognitive structural theory developed at the Yale University School of Nursing and addresses how adults conceive or understand the personhood of patients. The theory, first applied to nurses and since applied to other professions, postulates three levels that have the properties of cognitive structures. The third and highest level is held to be a meta-ethical theory of the moral structure of care. Those adults operating with level-III understanding synthesize systems of justice and care-based ethics.[59]

Individual differences

Empathy in the broadest sense refers to a reaction of one individual to another’s emotional state. Recent years have seen increased movement toward the idea that empathy occurs from motor neuron imitation. It cannot be said that empathy is a single unipolar construct but rather a set of constructs. In essence, not every individual responds equally and uniformly the same to various circumstances. The Empathic Concern scale assesses “other-oriented” feelings of sympathy and concern and the Personal Distress scale measures “self-oriented” feelings of personal anxiety and unease. The combination of these scales helps reveal those that might not be classified as empathetic and expands the narrow definition of empathy. Using this approach we can enlarge the basis of what it means to possess empathetic qualities and create a multi-faceted definition.[60]

Behavioral and neuroimaging research show that two underlying facets of the personality dimensions Extraversion and Agreeableness (the Warmth-Altruistic personality profile) are associated with empathic accuracy and increased brain activity in two brain regions important for empathic processing (medial prefrontal cortex and temporoparietal junction).[61]

Sex differences

See also: Sex differences in psychology § Empathy

The literature commonly indicates that females tend to have more cognitive empathy than males. On average, female subjects score higher than males on the Empathy Quotient (EQ), while males tend to score higher on the Systemizing Quotient (SQ). Both males and females with autistic spectrum disorders usually score lower on the EQ and higher on SQ (see below for more detail on autism and empathy).[29] A series of studies, using a variety of neurophysiological measures, including MEG,[62] spinal reflex excitability,[63] electroencephalography[64][65] and N400 paradigm[66] have documented the presence of an overall gender difference in the human mirror neuron system, with female participants tending to exhibit stronger motor resonance than male participants. In addition, the aforementioned studies found that female participants tended to score higher on empathy self-report dispositional measures and that these measures positively correlated with the physiological response. Other studies show no significant difference, and instead suggest that gender differences are the result of motivational differences.[67][68] However, a 2014 analysis from the journal of Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews reported that there is evidence that “sex differences in empathy have phylogenetic and ontogenetic roots in biology and are not merely cultural byproducts driven by socialization.”[69]

A review published in the journal Neuropsychologia found that women tended to be better at recognizing facial effects, expression processing and emotions in general.[70] Men only tended to be better at recognizing specific behavior which includes anger, aggression and threatening cues.[70] A 2006 meta-analysis by researcher Rena A Kirkland in the journal North American Journal of Psychology found small significant sex differences favoring females in “Reading of the mind” test. “Reading of the mind” test is an advanced ability measure of cognitive empathy in which Kirkland’s analysis involved 259 studies across 10 countries.[71] Another 2014 meta-analysis, in the journal of Cognition and Emotion, found a small overall female advantage in non-verbal emotional recognition across 215 samples.[72]

The 2014 Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews analysis found that, overall, there are sex differences in empathy from birth, growing larger with age and which remains consistent and stable across lifespan.[73] Females, on average, were found to have higher empathy than males, while children with higher empathy regardless of gender continue to be higher in empathy throughout development.[73] Further analysis of brain tools such as event related potentials found that females who saw human suffering tended to have higher ERP waveforms than males.[73] Another investigation with similar brain tools such as N400 amplitudes found, on average, higher N400 in females in response to social situations which positively correlated with self-reported empathy.[73] Structural fMRI studies also found females to have larger grey matter volumes in posterior inferior frontal and anterior inferior parietal cortex areas which are correlated with mirror neurons in fMRI literature.[73] Females also tended to have a stronger link between emotional and cognitive empathy.[73] The researchers found that the stability of these sex differences in development are unlikely to be explained by any environment influences but rather might have some roots in human evolution and inheritance.[73] Throughout prehistory, females were the primary nurturers and caretakers of children; so this might have led to an evolved neurological adaptation for women to be more aware and responsive to non-verbal expressions. According to the Primary Caretaker Hypothesis, prehistoric males did not have the same selective pressure as primary caretakers; so therefore this might explain modern day sex differences in emotion recognition and empathy.[73]

Environmental influences

The environment has been another interesting topic of study. Many theorize that environmental factors, such as parenting style and relationships, play a significant role in the development of empathy in children. Empathy promotes pro social relationships, helps mediate aggression, and allows us to relate to others, all of which make empathy an important emotion among children.

A study done by Caroline Tisot looked at how a variety of environmental factors affected the development of empathy in young children. Parenting style, parent empathy, and prior social experiences were looked at. The children participating in the study were asked to complete an effective empathy measure, while the children’s parents completed the Parenting Practices Questionnaire, which assesses parenting style, and the Balanced Emotional Empathy scale. This study found that a few parenting practices – as opposed to parenting style as a whole – contributed to the development of empathy in children. These practices include encouraging the child to imagine the perspectives of others and teaching the child to reflect on his or her own feelings. The results also show that the development of empathy varied based on the gender of the child and parent. Paternal warmth was found to be significantly important, and was positively related to empathy within children, especially in boys. However, maternal warmth was negatively related to empathy within children, especially in girls.[74]

Some research has also found that empathy can be disrupted due to trauma in the brain such as a stroke. In most cases, empathy is usually impaired if a lesion or stroke occurs on the right side of the brain.[75] In addition to this, it has been found that damage to the frontal lobe, which is primarily responsible for emotional regulation, can impact profoundly on a person’s capacity to experience empathy toward another individual.[76] People who have suffered from an acquired brain injury also show lower levels of empathy according to previous studies. More than 50% of people who suffer from a traumatic brain injury self-report a deficit in their empathic capacity.[77]

Empathic anger and distress


Empathic anger is an emotion, a form of empathic distress.[78] Empathic anger is felt in a situation where someone else is being hurt by another person or thing. “Unfortunately, there is no research on empathetic anger’s contribution to pro-social action. But it seems likely that, since anger in response to defending oneself ‘mobilizes energy and makes one capable of defending oneself with vigor’.”[79]

Empathic anger has direct effects on both helping and punishing desires. Empathic anger can be divided into two sub-categories: trait empathic anger and state empathic anger.[80]

The relationship between empathy and anger response towards another person has also been investigated, with two studies basically finding that the higher a person’s perspective taking ability, the less angry they were in response to a provocation. Empathic concern did not, however, significantly predict anger response, and higher personal distress was associated with increased anger.[81][82]


Empathic distress is feeling the perceived pain of another person. This feeling can be transformed into empathic anger, feelings of injustice, or guilt. These emotions can be perceived as pro-social; however, views differ as to whether they serve as motives for moral behavior.[78][83]

Influence on helping behavior

See also: Empathy-altruism

Emotions motivate individual behavior that aids in solving communal challenges as well as guiding group decisions about social exchange. Additionally, recent research has shown individuals who report regular experiences of gratitude engage more frequently in prosocial behaviors. Positive emotions like empathy or gratitude are linked to a more positive continual state and these people are far more likely to help others than those not experiencing a positive emotional state.[84] Thus, empathy’s influence extends beyond relating to other’s emotions, it correlates with an increased positive state and likeliness to aid others. Likewise, research has shown that people with high levels of empathy are also more likely than average to assume that others will comply with a request for help.[85] Measures of empathy show that mirror neurons are activated during arousal of sympathetic responses and prolonged activation shows increased probability to help others.

Research investigating the social response to natural disasters looked at the characteristics associated with individuals who help victims. Researchers found that cognitive empathy, rather than emotional empathy, predicted helping behavior towards victims.[86] Others have posited that taking on the perspectives of others (cognitive empathy) allows these individuals to better empathize with victims without as much discomfort, whereas sharing the emotions of the victims (emotional empathy) can cause emotional distress, helplessness, victim-blaming, and ultimately can lead to avoidance rather than helping.[87]


Neuroscientific basis of empathy

Contemporary neuroscience has allowed us to understand the neural basis of the human mind’s ability to understand and process emotion. Studies today enable us to see the activation of mirror neurons and attempt to explain the basic processes of empathy. By isolating these mirror neurons and measuring the neural basis for human mind reading and emotion sharing abilities,[94] science has come one step closer to finding the reason for reactions like empathy. Neuroscientists have already discovered that people scoring high on empathy tests have especially busy mirror neuron systems in their brains.[95] Empathy is a spontaneous sharing of affect, provoked by witnessing and sympathizing with another’s emotional state. In a way we mirror or mimic the emotional response that we would expect to feel in that condition or context, much like sympathy. Unlike personal distress, empathy is not characterized by aversion to another’s emotional response. Additionally, empathizing with someone requires a distinctly sympathetic reaction where personal distress demands avoidance of distressing matters. This distinction is vital because empathy is associated with the moral emotion sympathy, or empathetic concern, and consequently also prosocial or altruistic action.[94] Empathy leads to sympathy by definition unlike the over-aroused emotional response that turns into personal distress and causes a turning-away from another’s distress.

In empathy, people feel what we believe are the emotions of another, which makes it both affective and cognitive by most psychologists.[11] In this sense, arousal and empathy promote prosocial behavior as we accommodate each other to feel similar emotions. For social beings, negotiating interpersonal decisions is as important to survival as being able to navigate the physical landscape.[84]

A meta-analysis of recent fMRI studies of empathy confirmed that different brain areas are activated during affective–perceptual empathy and cognitive–evaluative empathy.[96] Also, a study with patients with different types of brain damage confirmed the distinction between emotional and cognitive empathy.[24] Specifically, the inferior frontal gyrus appears to be responsible for emotional empathy, and the ventromedial prefrontal gyrus seems to mediate cognitive empathy.[24]

Research in recent years has focused on possible brain processes underlying the experience of empathy. For instance, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) has been employed to investigate the functional anatomy of empathy.[97][98] These studies have shown that observing another person’s emotional state activates parts of the neuronal network involved in processing that same state in oneself, whether it is disgust,[99] touch,[100][101] or pain.[102][103][28][104] The study of the neural underpinnings of empathy has received increased interest following the target paper published by Preston and Frans de Waal,[105] following the discovery of mirror neurons in monkeys that fire both when the creature watches another perform an action as well as when they themselves perform it.

In their paper, they argue that attended perception of the object’s state automatically activates neural representations, and that this activation automatically primes or generates the associated autonomic and somatic responses (idea of perception-action-coupling),[106] unless inhibited. This mechanism is similar to the common coding theory between perception and action. Another recent study provides evidence of separate neural pathways activating reciprocal suppression in different regions of the brain associated with the performance of “social” and “mechanical” tasks. These findings suggest that the cognition associated with reasoning about the “state of another person’s mind” and “causal/mechanical properties of inanimate objects” are neurally suppressed from occurring at the same time.[107][108]

A recent meta-analysis of 40 fMRI studies found that affective empathy is correlated with increased activity in the insula while cognitive empathy is correlated with activity in the mid cingulate cortex and adjacent dorsomedial prefrontal cortex.[109]

It has been suggested that mirroring-behavior in motor neurons during empathy may help duplicate feelings.[110] Such sympathetic action may afford access to sympathetic feelings for another and, perhaps, trigger emotions of kindness, forgiveness.[111]


A difference in distribution between affective and cognitive empathy has been observed in various conditions. Psychopathy and narcissism have been associated with impairments in affective but not cognitive empathy, whereas bipolar disorder and borderline traits have been associated with deficits in cognitive but not affective empathy.[32] Autism spectrum disorders have been associated with various combinations, including deficits in cognitive empathy as well as deficits in both cognitive and affective empathy.[23][24][32][27][112][113] Schizophrenia, too, has been associated with deficits in both types of empathy.[114] However, even in people without conditions such as these, the balance between affective and cognitive empathy varies.[32]

Atypical empathic responses have been associated with autism and particular personality disorders such as psychopathyborderlinenarcissistic, and schizoid personality disorders; conduct disorder;[115] schizophreniabipolar disorder;[32] and depersonalization.[116] Lack of affective empathy has also been associated with sex offenders. It was found that offenders that had been raised in an environment where they were shown a lack of empathy and had endured the same type of abuse, felt less affective empathy for their victims.[117]


Psychopathy is a personality disorder partly characterized by antisocial and aggressive behaviors, as well as emotional and interpersonal deficits including shallow emotions and a lack of remorse and empathy.[140][141] The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) and International Classification of Diseases (ICD) list antisocial personality disorder (ASPD) and dissocial personality disorder, stating that these have been referred to or include what is referred to as psychopathy.[142][143][144][145]

A large body of research suggests that psychopathy is associated with atypical responses to distress cues (e.g. facial and vocal expressions of fear and sadness), including decreased activation of the fusiform and extrastriate cortical regions, which may partly account for impaired recognition of and reduced autonomic responsiveness to expressions of fear, and impairments of empathy.[146][147][148][149][150] Studies on children with psychopathic tendencies have also shown such associations.[151][152][153] The underlying biological surfaces for processing expressions of happiness are functionally intact in psychopaths, although less responsive than those of controls.[150][151][152][153] The neuroimaging literature is unclear as to whether deficits are specific to particular emotions such as fear. Some recent fMRI studies have reported that emotion perception deficits in psychopathy are pervasive across emotions (positives and negatives).[154][155]

A recent study on psychopaths found that, under certain circumstances, they could willfully empathize with others, and that their empathic reaction initiated the same way it does for controls. Psychopathic criminals were brain-scanned while watching videos of a person harming another individual. The psychopaths’ empathic reaction initiated the same way it did for controls when they were instructed to empathize with the harmed individual, and the area of the brain relating to pain was activated when the psychopaths were asked to imagine how the harmed individual felt. The research suggests how psychopaths could switch empathy on at will, which would enable them to be both callous and charming. The team who conducted the study say it is still unknown how to transform this willful empathy into the spontaneous empathy most people have, though they propose it could be possible to bring psychopaths closer to rehabilitation by helping them to activate their “empathy switch”. Others suggested that despite the results of the study, it remained unclear whether psychopaths’ experience of empathy was the same as that of controls, and also questioned the possibility of devising therapeutic interventions that would make the empathic reactions more automatic.[156][157]

Work conducted by Professor Jean Decety with large samples of incarcerated psychopaths offers additional insights. In one study, psychopaths were scanned while viewing video clips depicting people being intentionally hurt. They were also tested on their responses to seeing short videos of facial expressions of pain. The participants in the high-psychopathy group exhibited significantly less activation in the ventromedial prefrontal cortexamygdala and periaqueductal gray parts of the brain, but more activity in the striatum and the insula when compared to control participants.[158] In a second study, individuals with psychopathy exhibited a strong response in pain-affective brain regions when taking an imagine-self perspective, but failed to recruit the neural circuits that were activated in controls during an imagine-other perspective—in particular the ventromedial prefrontal cortex and amygdala—which may contribute to their lack of empathic concern.[159]

It was predicted that people who have high levels of psychopathy would have sufficient levels of cognitive empathy but would lack in their ability to use affective empathy. People that scored highly on psychopathy measures were less likely to portray affective empathy. There was a strong negative correlation showing that psychopathy and affective empathy correspond strongly. The DANVA-2 portrayed those who scored highly on the psychopathy scale do not lack in recognising emotion in facial expressions. Therefore, individuals who have high scores on psychopathy and do not lack in perspective-talking ability but do lack in compassion and the negative incidents that happen to others.[160]

Despite studies suggesting deficits in emotion perception and imagining others in pain, professor Simon Baron-Cohen claims psychopathy is associated with intact cognitive empathy, which would imply an intact ability to read and respond to behaviors, social cues and what others are feeling. Psychopathy is, however, associated with impairment in the other major component of empathy—affective (emotional) empathy—which includes the ability to feel the suffering and emotions of others (what scientists would term as emotional contagion), and those with the condition are therefore not distressed by the suffering of their victims. Such a dissociation of affective and cognitive empathy has indeed been demonstrated for aggressive offenders.[161] Those with autism, on the other hand, are claimed to be often impaired in both affective and cognitive empathy.[113]

One problem with the theory that the ability to turn empathy on and off constitutes psychopathy is that such a theory would classify socially sanctioned violence and punishment as psychopathy, as it means suspending empathy towards certain individuals and/or groups. The attempt to get around this by standardizing tests of psychopathy for cultures with different norms of punishment is criticized in this context for being based on the assumption that people can be classified in discrete cultures while cultural influences are in reality mixed and every person encounters a mosaic of influences (e.g. non-shared environment having more influence than family environment). It is suggested that psychopathy may be an artefact of psychiatry’s standardization along imaginary sharp lines between cultures, as opposed to an actual difference in the brain.[162][163]

Other conditions

Research indicates atypical empathic responses are also correlated with a variety of other conditions.

Borderline personality disorder is characterized by extensive behavioral and interpersonal difficulties that arise from emotional and cognitive dysfunction.[164] Dysfunctional social and interpersonal behavior has been shown to play a crucial role in the emotionally intense way people with borderline personality disorder react.[165] While individuals with borderline personality disorder may show their emotions too much, several authors have suggested that they might have a compromised ability to reflect upon mental states (impaired cognitive empathy), as well as an impaired theory of mind.[165] People with borderline personality disorder have been shown to be very good at recognizing emotions in people’s faces, suggesting increased empathic capacities.[166][167] It is, therefore, possible that impaired cognitive empathy (the capacity for understanding another person’s experience and perspective) may account for borderline personality disorder individuals’ tendency for interpersonal dysfunction, while “hyper-emotional empathy”[verification needed] may account for the emotional over-reactivity observed in these individuals.[165] One primary study confirmed that patients with borderline personality disorder were significantly impaired in cognitive empathy, yet there was no sign of impairment in affective empathy.[165]

One diagnostic criterion of narcissistic personality disorder is a lack of empathy and an unwillingness or inability to recognize or identify with the feelings and needs of others.[168]

Characteristics of schizoid personality disorder include emotional coldness, detachment, and impaired affect corresponding with an inability to be empathetic and sensitive towards others.[169][170][171]

A study conducted by Jean Decety and colleagues at the University of Chicago demonstrated that subjects with aggressive conduct disorder elicit atypical empathic responses to viewing others in pain.[115] Subjects with conduct disorder were at least as responsive as controls to the pain of others but, unlike controls, subjects with conduct disorder showed strong and specific activation of the amygdala and ventral striatum (areas that enable a general arousing effect of reward), yet impaired activation of the neural regions involved in self-regulation and metacognition (including moral reasoning), in addition to diminished processing between the amygdala and the prefrontal cortex.[115]

Schizophrenia is characterized by impaired affective empathy,[11][32] as well as severe cognitive and empathy impairments as measured by the Empathy Quotient (EQ).[114] These empathy impairments are also associated with impairments in social cognitive tasks.[114]

Bipolar individuals have been observed to have impaired cognitive empathy and theory of mind, but increased affective empathy.[32][172] Despite cognitive flexibility being impaired, planning behavior is intact. It has been suggested that dysfunctions in the prefrontal cortex could result in the impaired cognitive empathy, since impaired cognitive empathy has been related with neurocognitive task performance involving cognitive flexibility.[172]

Lieutenant Colonel Dave Grossman, in his book On Killing, suggests that military training artificially creates depersonalization in soldiers, suppressing empathy and making it easier for them to kill other human beings.[116]

In educational contexts

Another growing focus of investigation is how empathy manifests in education between teachers and learners.[173] Although there is general agreement that empathy is essential in educational settings, research has found that it is difficult to develop empathy in trainee teachers.[174] According to one theory, there are seven components involved in the effectiveness of intercultural communication; empathy was found to be one of the seven. This theory also states that empathy is learnable. However, research also shows that it is more difficult to empathize when there are differences between people including status, culture, religion, language, skin colour, gender, age and so on.[174]

An important target of the method Learning by teaching (LbT) is to train systematically and, in each lesson, teach empathy. Students have to transmit new content to their classmates, so they have to reflect continuously on the mental processes of the other students in the classroom. This way it is possible to develop step-by-step the students’ feeling for group reactions and networking. Carl R. Rogers pioneered research in effective psychotherapy and teaching which espoused that empathy coupled with unconditional positive regard or caring for students and authenticity or congruence were the most important traits for a therapist or teacher to have. Other research and publications by Tausch, Aspy, Roebuck. Lyon, and meta-analyses by Cornelius-White, corroborated the importance of these person-centered traits.[175][176]

In intercultural contexts

To achieve intercultural empathy, psychologists have employed empathy training. One study hypothesized that empathy training would increase the measured level of relational empathy among the individuals in the experimental group when compared to the control group.[177] The study also hypothesized that empathy training would increase communication among the experimental group, and that perceived satisfaction with group dialogue would also increase among the experimental group. To test this, the experimenters used the Hogan Empathy Scale, the Barrett-Lennard Relationship Inventory, and questionnaires. Using these measures, the study found that empathy training was not successful in increasing relational empathy. Also, communication and satisfaction among groups did not increase as a result of the empathy training. While there didn’t seem to be a clear relationship between empathy and relational empathy training, the study did report that “relational empathy training appeared to foster greater expectations for a deep dialogic process resulting in treatment differences in perceived depth of communication”.

US researchers William Weeks, Paul Pedersen et al. state that developing intercultural empathy enables the interpretation of experiences or perspectives from more than one worldview.[178] Intercultural empathy can also improve self-awareness and critical awareness of one’s own interaction style as conditioned by one’s cultural views[179] and promote a view of self-as-process.[180]


The empathy-altruism relationship also has broad and practical implications. Knowledge of the power of the empathic feeling to evoke altruistic motivation may lead to strategies for learning to suppress or avoid these feelings; such numbing or loss of the capacity to feel empathy for clients has been suggested as a factor in the experience of burnout among case workers in helping professions. Awareness of this impending futile effort— nurses caring for terminal patients or pedestrians walking by the homeless—may make individuals try to avoid feelings of empathy in order to avoid the resulting altruistic motivation. Promoting an understanding about the mechanisms by which altruistic behavior is driven, whether it is from minimizing sadness or the arousal of mirror neurons allows people to better cognitively control their actions. However, empathy-induced altruism may not always produce pro-social effects. It could lead one to increase the welfare of those for whom empathy is felt at the expense of other potential pro-social goals, thus inducing a type of bias. Researchers suggest that individuals are willing to act against the greater collective good or to violate their own moral principles of fairness and justice if doing so will benefit a person for whom empathy is felt.[181]

On a more positive note, aroused individuals in an empathetic manner may focus on the long-term welfare rather than just the short-term of those in need. Empathy-based socialization is very different from current practices directed toward inhibition of egoistic impulses through shaping, modeling and internalized guilt. Therapeutic programs built around facilitating altruistic impulses by encouraging perspective taking and empathetic feelings might enable individuals to develop more satisfactory interpersonal relations, especially in the long-term. At a societal level, experiments have indicated that empathy-induced altruism can be used to improve attitudes toward stigmatized groups, even used to improve racial attitudes, actions toward people with AIDS, the homeless and even convicts. Such resulting altruism has also been found to increase cooperation in competitive situations.[182]

In the field of positive psychology, empathy has also been compared with altruism and egotism. Altruism is behavior that is aimed at benefitting another person, while egotism is a behavior that is acted out for personal gain. Sometimes, when someone is feeling empathetic towards another person, acts of altruism occur. However, many question whether or not these acts of altruism are motivated by egotistical gains. According to positive psychologists, people can be adequately moved by their empathies to be altruistic,[183][184] and there are others who consider the wrong moral leaning perspectives and having empathy can lead to polarization, ignite violence and motivate dysfunctional behavior in relationships.[185]

Practical issues

The capacity to empathize is a revered trait in society.[23] Empathy is considered a motivating factor for unselfish, prosocial behavior,[186] whereas a lack of empathy is related to antisocial behavior.[23][187][188][189]

Empathic engagement helps an individual understand and anticipate the behavior of another. Apart from the automatic tendency to recognize the emotions of others, one may also deliberately engage in empathic reasoning. Two general methods have been identified here. An individual may simulate fictitious versions of the beliefs, desires, character traits and context of another individual to see what emotional feelings it provokes. Or, an individual may simulate an emotional feeling and then access the environment for a suitable reason for the emotional feeling to be appropriate for that specific environment.[44]

Some research suggests that people are more able and willing to empathize with those most similar to themselves. In particular, empathy increases with similarities in culture and living conditions. Empathy is more likely to occur between individuals whose interaction is more frequent.[190][191] A measure of how well a person can infer the specific content of another person’s thoughts and feelings has been developed by William Ickes.[67] In 2010, team led by Grit Hein and Tania Singer gave two groups of men wristbands according to which football team they supported. Each participant received a mild electric shock, then watched another go through the same pain. When the wristbands matched, both brains flared: with pain, and empathic pain. If they supported opposing teams, the observer was found to have little empathy.[192] Bloom calls improper use of empathy and social intelligence as a tool can lead to shortsighted actions and parochialism,[83] he further defies conventional supportive research findings as gremlins from biased standards. He ascertains empathy as an exhaustive process that limits us in morality and if low empathy makes for bad people, bundled up in that unsavoury group would be many who have Asperger’s or autism and reveals his own brother is severely autistic.[citation needed] Early indicators for a lack of empathy:

  1. Frequently finding oneself in prolonged arguments
  2. Forming opinions early and defending them vigorously
  3. Thinking that other people are overly sensitive
  4. Refusing to listen to other points of view
  5. Blaming others for mistakes
  6. Not listening when spoken to
  7. Holding grudges and having difficulty to forgive
  8. Inability to work in a team[citation needed]

There are concerns that the empathizer’s own emotional background may affect or distort what emotions they perceive in others.[193] It is evidenced that societies that promote individualism have lower ability for empathy.[194] Empathy is not a process that is likely to deliver certain judgments about the emotional states of others. It is a skill that is gradually developed throughout life, and which improves the more contact we have with the person with whom one empathizes. Empathizers report finding it easier to take the perspective of another person when they have experienced a similar situation,[195] as well as experience greater empathic understanding.[196] Research regarding whether similar past experience makes the empathizer more accurate is mixed.[195][196]

Empathic distress fatigue

Excessive empathy can lead to empathic distress fatigue, especially if it is associated with pathological altruism. The medical risks are fatigueoccupational burnoutguiltshameanxiety, and depression.[199][200]

Disciplinary approaches



In his 2008 book, How to Make Good Decisions and Be Right All the Time:Solving the Riddle of Right and Wrong, writer Iain King presents two reasons why empathy is the “essence” or “DNA” of right and wrong. First, he argues that empathy uniquely has all the characteristics we can know about an ethical viewpoint[201] – including that it is “partly self-standing”, and so provides a source of motivation that is partly within us and partly outside, as moral motivations seem to be.[202] This allows empathy-based judgements to have sufficient distance from a personal opinion to count as “moral”. His second argument is more practical: he argues, “Empathy for others really is the route to value in life”, and so the means by which a selfish attitude can become a moral one. By using empathy as the basis for a system of ethics, King is able to reconcile ethics based on consequences with virtue-ethics and act-based accounts of right and wrong.[203] His empathy-based system has been taken up by some Buddhists,[204] and is used to address some practical problems, such as when to tell lies,[205] and how to develop culturally-neutral rules for romance.

In the 2007 book The Ethics of Care and Empathy, philosopher Michael Slote introduces a theory of care-based ethics that is grounded in empathy. His claim is that moral motivation does, and should, stem from a basis of empathic response. He claims that our natural reaction to situations of moral significance are explained by empathy. He explains that the limits and obligations of empathy and in turn morality are natural. These natural obligations include a greater empathic, and moral obligation to family and friends, along with an account of temporal and physical distance. In situations of close temporal and physical distance, and with family or friends, our moral obligation seems stronger to us than with strangers at a distance naturally. Slote explains that this is due to empathy and our natural empathic ties. He further adds that actions are wrong if and only if they reflect or exhibit a deficiency of fully developed empathic concern for others on the part of the agent.[206]


In phenomenology, empathy describes the experience of something from the other’s viewpoint, without confusion between self and other. This draws on the sense of agency. In the most basic sense, this is the experience of the other’s body and, in this sense, it is an experience of “my body over there”. In most other respects, however, the experience is modified so that what is experienced is experienced as being the other’s experience; in experiencing empathy, what is experienced is not “my” experience, even though I experience it. Empathy is also considered to be the condition of intersubjectivity and, as such, the source of the constitution of objectivity.[207]


Some postmodern historians such as Keith Jenkins in recent years have debated whether or not it is possible to empathize with people from the past. Jenkins argues that empathy only enjoys such a privileged position in the present because it corresponds harmoniously with the dominant liberal discourse of modern society and can be connected to John Stuart Mill‘s concept of reciprocal freedom. Jenkins argues the past is a foreign country and as we do not have access to the epistemological conditions of by gone ages we are unable to empathize.[208]

It is impossible to forecast the effect of empathy on the future.[citation needed] A past subject may take part in the present by the so-called historic present. If we watch from a fictitious past, can tell the present with the future tense, as it happens with the trick of the false prophecy. There is no way of telling the present with the means of the past.[209]


Heinz Kohut is the main introducer of the principle of empathy in psychoanalysis. His principle applies to the method of gathering unconscious material. The possibility of not applying the principle is granted in the cure, for instance when you must reckon with another principle, that of reality.

In evolutionary psychology, attempts at explaining pro-social behavior often mention the presence of empathy in the individual as a possible variable. While exact motives behind complex social behaviors are difficult to distinguish, the “ability to put oneself in the shoes of another person and experience events and emotions the way that person experienced them” is the definitive factor for truly altruistic behavior according to Batson’s empathy-altruism hypothesis. If empathy is not felt, social exchange (what’s in it for me?) supersedes pure altruism, but if empathy is felt, an individual will help by actions or by word, regardless of whether it is in their self-interest to do so and even if the costs outweigh potential rewards.[210]

Business and management

In the 2009 book Wired to Care, strategy consultant Dev Patnaik argues that a major flaw in contemporary business practice is a lack of empathy inside large corporations. He states that lacking any sense of empathy, people inside companies struggle to make intuitive decisions and often get fooled into believing they understand their business if they have quantitative research to rely upon. Patnaik claims that the real opportunity for companies doing business in the 21st century is to create a widely held sense of empathy for customers, pointing to NikeHarley-Davidson, and IBM as examples of “Open Empathy Organizations”. Such institutions, he claims, see new opportunities more quickly than competitors, adapt to change more easily, and create workplaces that offer employees a greater sense of mission in their jobs.[211] In the 2011 book The Empathy Factor, organizational consultant Marie Miyashiro similarly argues the value of bringing empathy to the workplace, and offers Nonviolent Communication as an effective mechanism for achieving this.[212] In studies by the Management Research Group, empathy was found to be the strongest predictor of ethical leadership behavior out of 22 competencies in its management model, and empathy was one of the three strongest predictors of senior executive effectiveness.[213] A study by the Center for Creative Leadership found empathy to be positively correlated to job performance amongst employees as well.[214]

Evolution of cooperation

Empathetic perspective taking plays important roles in sustaining cooperation in human societies, as studied by evolutionary game theory. In game theoretical models, indirect reciprocity refers to the mechanism of cooperation based on moral reputations, assigned to individuals based on a set of moral rules called social norms. It has been shown that if reputations are relative and individuals disagree on moral the standing of others (for example, because they use different moral evaluation rules or make errors of judgement), then cooperation will not be sustained. However, when individuals have the capacity for empathetic perspective taking, altruistic behavior can once again evolve.[36] Moreover, evolutionary models also revealed that empathetic perspective taking itself can evolve, promoting prosocial behavior in human populations.


Research into the measurement of empathy has sought to answer a number of questions: who should be carrying out the measurement? What should pass for empathy and what should be discounted? What unit of measure (UOM) should be adopted and to what degree should each occurrence precisely match that UOM are also key questions that researchers have sought to investigate.

Researchers have approached the measurement of empathy from a number of perspectives.

Behavioral measures normally involve raters assessing the presence or absence of certain either predetermined or ad hoc behaviors in the subjects they are monitoring. Both verbal and non-verbal behaviors have been captured on video by experimenters such as Truax.[215] Other experimenters, including Mehrabian and Epstein,[216] have required subjects to comment upon their own feelings and behaviors, or those of other people involved in the experiment, as indirect ways of signaling their level of empathic functioning to the raters.

Physiological responses tend to be captured by elaborate electronic equipment that has been physically connected to the subject’s body. Researchers then draw inferences about that person’s empathic reactions from the electronic readings produced.[217]

Bodily or “somatic” measures can be looked upon as behavioral measures at a micro level. Their focus is upon measuring empathy through facial and other non-verbally expressed reactions in the empathizer. These changes are presumably underpinned by physiological changes brought about by some form of “emotional contagion” or mirroring.[217] These reactions, whilst appearing to reflect the internal emotional state of the empathizer, could also, if the stimulus incident lasted more than the briefest period, be reflecting the results of emotional reactions that are based upon more pieces of thinking through (cognitions) associated with role-taking (“if I were him I would feel …”).

For the very young, picture or puppet-story indices for empathy have been adopted to enable even very young, pre-school subjects to respond without needing to read questions and write answers.[218] Dependent variables (variables that are monitored for any change by the experimenter) for younger subjects have included self reporting on a 7-point smiley face scale and filmed facial reactions.[219]

Paper-based indices involve one or more of a variety of methods of responding. In some experiments, subjects are required to watch video scenarios (either staged or authentic) and to make written responses which are then assessed for their levels of empathy;[220] scenarios are sometimes also depicted in printed form.[221]

Self-report measures

Measures of empathy also frequently require subjects to self-report upon their own ability or capacity for empathy, using Likert-style numerical responses to a printed questionnaire that may have been designed to tap into the affective, cognitive-affective or largely cognitive substrates of empathic functioning. Some questionnaires claim to have been able to tap into both cognitive and affective substrates.[222] However, a 2019 meta analysis questions the validity of self-report measures of cognitive empathy in particular, finding that such self-report measures have negligibly small correlations with corresponding behavioral measures.[38]

In the field of medicine, a measurement tool for carers is the Jefferson Scale of Physician Empathy, Health Professional Version (JSPE-HP).[223]

The Interpersonal Reactivity Index (IRI) is among the oldest published measurement tools (first published in 1983) that provides a multi-dimensional assessment of empathy. It comprises a self-report questionnaire of 28 items, divided into four 7-item scales covering the above subdivisions of affective and cognitive empathy.[23][26] More recent self-report tools include The Empathy Quotient (EQ) created by Baron-Cohen and Wheelwright[224] which comprises a self-report questionnaire consisting of 60 items. Also among more recent multi-dimensional scales is the Questionnaire of Cognitive and Affective Empathy (QCAE, first published in 2011).[225]

The Empathic Experience Scale is a 30-item questionnaire that was developed to cover the measurement of empathy from a phenomenological perspective on intersubjectivity, which provides a common basis for the perceptual experience (vicarious experience dimension) and a basic cognitive awareness (intuitive understanding dimension) of others’ emotional states.[226]

International comparison of country-wide empathy

In a 2016 study by a US research team, self-report data from the mentioned Interreactivity Index (see Measurement) were compared across countries. From the surveyed nations, the five highest empathy scores had (in descending order): EcuadorSaudi ArabiaPeruDenmark and United Arab EmiratesBulgariaPolandEstoniaVenezuela and Lithuania ranked as having lowest empathy scores.[227]

See also


  1. ^Bellet PS, Maloney MJ (October 1991). “The importance of empathy as an interviewing skill in medicine”. JAMA. 266 (13): 1831–2. doi:1001/jama.1991.03470130111039PMID 1909761.
  2. Jump up to:ab Rothschild, B. (with Rand, M. L.). (2006). Help for the Helper: The psychophysiology of compassion fatigue and vicarious trauma.
  3. ^Read H (August 22, 2019). “A typology of empathy and its many moral forms”. Philosophy Compass. 14 (10). doi:1111/phc3.12623.
  4. ^“The relationship of nursing students’ spiritual care perspectives to their expressions of spiritual empathy” Chism, Lisa Astalos ; Magnan, Morris A. The Journal of nursing education, 2009-11, Vol.48 (11), p.597-605; United States
  5. ^Harper D. “empathy”Online Etymology Dictionary.
  6. ^ἐμπάθειαLiddell, Henry GeorgeScott, RobertA Greek–English Lexicon at the Perseus Project.
  7. ^Titchener EB (2014). “Introspection and empath” (PDF). Dialogues in Philosophy, Mental and Neuro Sciences. 7: 25–30. Archived from the original (PDF) on July 26, 2014.
  8. ^Gallese V (2003). “The roots of empathy: the shared manifold hypothesis and the neural basis of intersubjectivity”. Psychopathology. 36 (4): 171–80. CiteSeerX 14504450S2CID 9422028.
  9. ^Koss J (March 2006). “On the Limits of Empathy”. The Art Bulletin. 88 (1): 139–157. doi:1080/00043079.2006.10786282JSTOR 25067229S2CID 194079190.
  10. ^“εμπάθεια”. Glosbe. Glosbe dictionary. Retrieved April 26,2019.
  11. Jump up to:abc Pijnenborg GH, Spikman JM, Jeronimus BF, Aleman A (June 2013). “Insight in schizophrenia: associations with empathy”. European Archives of Psychiatry and Clinical Neuroscience. 263 (4): 299–307. doi:1007/s00406-012-0373-0PMID 23076736S2CID 25194328.
  12. ^Hodges SD, Klein KJ (September 2001). “Regulating the costs of empathy: the price of being human”(PDF). The Journal of Socio-economics. 30 (5): 437–52. doi:1016/S1053-5357(01)00112-3.
  13. ^Dietrich C. “Decision Making: Factors that Influence Decision Making, Heuristics Used, and Decision Outcomes”. Inquiries Journal. Inquiries Journal/Student Pulse LLC. Archivedfrom the original on October 3, 2017. Retrieved February 6, 2017.
  14. ^Roth-Hanania R, Davidov M, Zahn-Waxler C (June 2011). “Empathy development from 8 to 16 months: early signs of concern for others”. Infant Behavior & Development. 34(3): 447–58. doi:1016/j.infbeh.2011.04.007PMID 21600660.
  15. ^Baird JD, Nadel L (April 2010). Happiness Genes: Unlock the Positive Potential Hidden in Your DNA. New Page Books. ISBN978-1-60163-105-3.
  16. ^O’Malley WJ (1999). “Teaching Empathy”. America. 180(12): 22–26.
  17. ^Schwartz W (2002). “From passivity to competence: a conceptualization of knowledge, skill, tolerance, and empathy”. Psychiatry. 65(4): 339–45. doi:1521/psyc.65.4.338.20239PMID 12530337S2CID 35496086.
  18. ^Schwartz W (2013). “The parameters of empathy: Core considerations for psychotherapy and supervision”. Advances in Descriptive Psychology. 10doi:2139/ssrn.2393689.
  19. ^Meltzoff AN, Decety J (March 2003). “What imitation tells us about social cognition: a rapprochement between developmental psychology and cognitive neuroscience”. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences. 358(1431): 491–500. doi:1098/rstb.2002.1261PMC 1351349PMID 12689375.
  20. Jump up to:abBatson CD (2009). “These things called empathy: Eight related but distinct phenomena.”. In Decety J, Ickes W (eds.). The Social Neuroscience of Empathy. Cambridge: MIT Press. pp. 3–15.
  21. ^Hatfield E, Cacioppo JL, Rapson RL (1993). “Emotional contagion”(PDF). Current Directions in Psychological Science. 2 (3): 96–99. doi:1111/1467-8721.ep10770953S2CID 220533081. Archived from the original (PDF) on November 19, 2012.
  22. ^Bar-On RE, Parker JD (2000). The Handbook of Emotional Intelligence: Theory, Development, Assessment, and Application at Home, School, and in the Workplace. San Francisco, California: Jossey-Bass. ISBN0-7879-4984-1.
  23. Jump up to:abc d e f g h i j k l m n o p q Rogers K, Dziobek I, Hassenstab J, Wolf OT, Convit A (April 2007). “Who cares? Revisiting empathy in Asperger syndrome” (PDF). Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. 37 (4): 709–15. doi:1007/s10803-006-0197-8PMID 16906462S2CID 13999363Archived (PDF) from the original on July 16, 2015.
  24. Jump up to:abc d e f g Shamay-Tsoory SG, Aharon-Peretz J, Perry D (March 2009). “Two systems for empathy: a double dissociation between emotional and cognitive empathy in inferior frontal gyrus versus ventromedial prefrontal lesions”. Brain. 132 (Pt 3): 617–27. doi:1093/brain/awn279PMID 18971202.
  25. ^de Waal FB (2008). “Putting the altruism back into altruism: the evolution of empathy”(PDF). Annual Review of Psychology. 59(1): 279–300. doi:1146/annurev.psych.59.103006.093625PMID 17550343Archived (PDF) from the original on April 17, 2012.
  26. Jump up to:abc Davis M (1983). “Measuring individual differences in empathy: evidence for a multidimensional approach”. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 44 (1): 113–126. doi:1037/0022-3514.44.1.113.
  27. Jump up to:abc d e f g h i Minio-Paluello I, Lombardo MV, Chakrabarti B, Wheelwright S, Baron-Cohen S (December 2009). “Response to Smith’s Letter to the Editor “Emotional Empathy in Autism Spectrum Conditions: Weak, Intact, or Heightened?””. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders39 (12): 1749. doi:1007/s10803-009-0800-xS2CID 42834991. Pdf.Archived March 4, 2016, at the Wayback Machine

See also:

Smith A (December 2009). “Emotional empathy in autism spectrum conditions: weak, intact, or heightened?”. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. 39 (12): 1747–8, author reply 1749–54. doi:10.1007/s10803-009-0799-zPMID 19572192S2CID 13290717.

  1. Jump up to:abc Lamm C, Batson CD, Decety J (January 2007). “The neural substrate of human empathy: effects of perspective-taking and cognitive appraisal”. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience. 19 (1): 42–58. CiteSeerX 1.1.511.3950doi:10.1162/jocn.2007.19.1.42PMID 17214562S2CID 2828843.
  2. Jump up to:abc Baron-Cohen S (2003). The Essential Difference: The Truth about the Male and Female Brain. Basic Books. ISBN 9780738208442.
  3. ^Gerace A, Day A, Casey S, Mohr P (2013). “An exploratory investigation of the process of perspective taking in interpersonal situations”. Journal of Relationships Research. 4: e6, 1–12. doi:1017/jrr.2013.6.
  4. ^Rogers K, Dziobek I, Hassenstab J, Wolf OT, Convit A (April 2007). “Who cares? Revisiting empathy in Asperger syndrome”(PDF). Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. 37 (4): 709–15. doi:1007/s10803-006-0197-8PMID 16906462S2CID 13999363Archived (PDF) from the original on July 16, 2015.
  5. Jump up to:abc d e f g Cox CL, Uddin LQ, Di Martino A, Castellanos FX, Milham MP, Kelly C (August 2012). “The balance between feeling and knowing: affective and cognitive empathy are reflected in the brain’s intrinsic functional dynamics”. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience. 7 (6): 727–37. doi:1093/scan/nsr051PMC 3427869PMID 21896497.
  6. ^Winczewski LA, Bowen JD, Collins NL (March 2016). “Is Empathic Accuracy Enough to Facilitate Responsive Behavior in Dyadic Interaction? Distinguishing Ability From Motivation”. Psychological Science. 27(3): 394–404. doi:1177/0956797615624491PMID 26847609S2CID 206588127.
  7. ^Kanske P, Böckler A, Trautwein FM, Parianen Lesemann FH, Singer T (September 2016). “Are strong empathizers better mentalizers? Evidence for independence and interaction between the routes of social cognition”. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience. 11(9): 1383–92. doi:1093/scan/nsw052PMC 5015801PMID 27129794.
  8. ^Kanske P, Böckler A, Trautwein FM, Singer T (November 2015). “Dissecting the social brain: Introducing the EmpaToM to reveal distinct neural networks and brain-behavior relations for empathy and Theory of Mind”. NeuroImage. 122: 6–19. doi:1016/j.neuroimage.2015.07.082PMID26254589S2CID 20614006.
  9. Jump up to:abRadzvilavicius AL, Stewart AJ, Plotkin JB (April 2019). “Evolution of empathetic moral evaluation”. eLife. 8: e44269. doi:7554/eLife.44269PMC 6488294PMID 30964002.
  10. ^“The Tao of Doing Good (SSIR)”. Archivedfrom the original on February 13, 2017. Retrieved February 13, 2017.
  11. Jump up to:abMurphy BA, Lilienfeld SO (August 2019). “Are self-report cognitive empathy ratings valid proxies for cognitive empathy ability? Negligible meta-analytic relations with behavioral task performance”. Psychological Assessment. 31 (8): 1062–1072. doi:1037/pas0000732PMID 31120296.
  12. ^White TI (2007). In defense of dolphins: the new moral frontier. Malden, MA: Blackwell Pub.
  13. ^Sandin J (2007). Bonobos: Encounters in Empathy. Milwaukee: Zoological Society of Milwaukee & The Foundation for Wildlife Conservation, Inc. p. 109. ISBN978-0-9794151-0-4.
  14. ^de Waal FB (2009). The age of empathy: nature’s lessons for a kinder society. Harmony Books.
  15. ^Ben-Ami Bartal I, Decety J, Mason P (December 2011). “Empathy and pro-social behavior in rats”. Science. 334(6061): 1427–30. Bibcode:..334.1427Bdoi:10.1126/science.1210789PMC 3760221PMID 22158823.
  16. ^Langford DJ, Crager SE, Shehzad Z, Smith SB, Sotocinal SG, Levenstadt JS, et al. (June 2006). “Social modulation of pain as evidence for empathy in mice”. Science. 312(5782): 1967–70. Bibcode:..312.1967Ldoi:10.1126/science.1128322PMID 16809545S2CID 26027821.
  17. Jump up to:abde Waal FB (2008). “Putting the altruism back into altruism: the evolution of empathy”. Annual Review of Psychology. 59 (1): 279–300. doi:1146/annurev.psych.59.103006.093625PMID 17550343.
  18. ^Decety J (August 2011). “The neuroevolution of empathy”. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences. 1231(1): 35–45. Bibcode:..35Ddoi:10.1111/j.1749-6632.2011.06027.xPMID 21651564S2CID 9895828.
  19. ^Decety J, Svetlova M (January 2012). “Putting together phylogenetic and ontogenetic perspectives on empathy”. Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience. 2(1): 1–24. doi:1016/j.dcn.2011.05.003PMC 6987713PMID 22682726.
  20. ^Pfeifer R, Bongard J (October 2006). How the Body Shapes the Way We Think: A New View of Intelligence. MIT Press.
  21. ^Rumbaugh DM, Washburn DA (October 2008). Intelligence of apes and other rational beings. Yale University Press.
  22. ^Hoffman ML (2000). Empathy and Moral Development. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
  23. ^Decety J, Meyer M (2008). “From emotion resonance to empathic understanding: a social developmental neuroscience account”. Development and Psychopathology. 20(4): 1053–80. doi:1017/S0954579408000503PMID 18838031S2CID 8508693.
  24. ^Eisenberg N, Spinrad TL, Sadovsky A (2006). “Empathy-related responding in children.”. In Killen M, Smetana J (eds.). Handbook of Moral Development. Mahwah, New Jersey: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. pp. 517–549.
  25. ^Falck-Ytter T, Gredebäck G, von Hofsten C (July 2006). “Infants predict other people’s action goals”. Nature Neuroscience. 9(7): 878–9. doi:1038/nn1729PMID 16783366S2CID 2409686.
  26. ^Zahn-Waxler C, Radke-Yarrow M (1990). “The origins of empathic concern”. Motivation and Emotion. 14(2): 107–130. doi:1007/BF00991639S2CID 143436918.
  27. ^Decety J, Michalska KJ, Akitsuki Y (September 2008). “Who caused the pain? An fMRI investigation of empathy and intentionality in children”. Neuropsychologia. 46(11): 2607–14. doi:1016/j.neuropsychologia.2008.05.026PMID 18573266S2CID 19428145.
  28. ^Brain Scans Show Children Naturally Prone to EmpathyArchivedJanuary 2, 2009, at the Wayback Machine Retrieved July 13, 2008.
  29. ^Wimmer H, Perner J (January 1983). “Beliefs about beliefs: representation and constraining function of wrong beliefs in young children’s understanding of deception”. Cognition. 13(1): 103–28. doi:1016/0010-0277(83)90004-5PMID 6681741S2CID 17014009.
  30. ^Baron-Cohen S, Leslie AM, Frith U (October 1985). “Does the autistic child have a “theory of mind”?”. Cognition. 21(1): 37–46. doi:1016/0010-0277(85)90022-8PMID 2934210S2CID 14955234.
  31. ^Leslie AM, Frith U (November 1988). “Autistic children’s understanding of seeing, knowing and believing”. British Journal of Developmental Psychology6(4): 315–324. doi:1111/j.2044-835X.1988.tb01104.x.
  32. ^Olsen DP (September 2001). “Empathetic maturity: theory of moral point of view in clinical relations”. ANS. Advances in Nursing Science. 24(1): 36–46. doi:1097/00012272-200109000-00006PMID 11554532Archived from the original on September 7, 2009.
  33. ^Davis MH (1983). “Measuring Individual Differences in Empathy: Evidence for a Multidimensional Approach”. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 44(1): 113–26. doi:1037/0022-3514.44.1.113.
  34. ^Haas BW, Brook M, Remillard L, Ishak A, Anderson IW, Filkowski MM (2015). “I know how you feel: the warm-altruistic personality profile and the empathic brain”. PLOS ONE. 10(3): e0120639. Bibcode:.1020639Hdoi:10.1371/journal.pone.0120639PMC 4359130PMID 25769028.
  35. ^Cheng YW, Tzeng OJ, Decety J, Imada T, Hsieh JC (July 2006). “Gender differences in the human mirror system: a magnetoencephalography study”. NeuroReport. 17(11): 1115–9. doi:1097/01.wnr.0000223393.59328.21PMID 16837838S2CID 18811017.
  36. ^Cheng Y, Decety J, Lin CP, Hsieh JC, Hung D, Tzeng OJ (June 2007). “Sex differences in spinal excitability during observation of bipedal locomotion”. NeuroReport. 18(9): 887–90. doi:1097/WNR.0b013e3280ebb486PMID 17515795S2CID 16295878.
  37. ^Yang CY, Decety J, Lee S, Chen C, Cheng Y (January 2009). “Gender differences in the mu rhythm during empathy for pain: an electroencephalographic study”. Brain Research. 1251: 176–84. doi:1016/j.brainres.2008.11.062PMID19083993S2CID 40145972.
  38. ^Cheng Y, Lee PL, Yang CY, Lin CP, Hung D, Decety J (May 2008). Rustichini A (ed.). “Gender differences in the mu rhythm of the human mirror-neuron system”. PLOS ONE. 3(5): e2113. Bibcode:..3.2113Cdoi:10.1371/journal.pone.0002113PMC 2361218PMID 18461176.
  39. ^Proverbio AM, Riva F, Zani A (April 2010). “When neurons do not mirror the agent’s intentions: sex differences in neural coding of goal-directed actions”. Neuropsychologia. 48(5): 1454–63. doi:1016/j.neuropsychologia.2010.01.015PMID 20117123S2CID 207236007Archived from the original on September 8, 2017.
  40. Jump up to:abIckes W (1997). Empathic accuracy. New York: The Guilford Press.
  41. ^Klein K, Hodges S (2001). “Gender Differences, Motivation, and Empathic Accuracy: When it Pays to Understand”. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin. 27(6): 720–730. doi:1177/0146167201276007S2CID 14361887.
  42. ^Christov-Moore L, Simpson EA, Coudé G, Grigaityte K, Iacoboni M, Ferrari PF (October 2014). “Empathy: gender effects in brain and behavior”. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews. 46(Pt 4): 604–27. doi:1016/j.neubiorev.2014.09.001PMC5110041PMID 25236781.
  43. Jump up to:abKret ME, De Gelder B (June 2012). “A review on sex differences in processing emotional signals”. Neuropsychologia. 50 (7): 1211–21. doi:1016/j.neuropsychologia.2011.12.022PMID 22245006S2CID 11695245.
  44. ^“Meta-analysis reveals adult female superiority in “Reading the Mind in the Eyes Test. ResearchGate. Archivedfrom the original on December 8, 2015. Retrieved December 1, 2015.
  45. ^Thompson AE, Voyer D (January 1, 2014). “Sex differences in the ability to recognise non-verbal displays of emotion: a meta-analysis”. Cognition & Emotion. 28(7): 1164–95. doi:1080/02699931.2013.875889PMID 24400860S2CID 5402395.
  46. Jump up to:abc d e f g h Christov-Moore L, Simpson EA, Coudé G, Grigaityte K, Iacoboni M, Ferrari PF (October 2014). “Empathy: gender effects in brain and behavior”. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews. 46 Pt 4: 604–27. doi:1016/j.neubiorev.2014.09.001PMC 5110041PMID 25236781Archived from the original on August 14, 2017.
  47. ^Tisot CM (2003). Environmental contributions to empathy development in young children (PhD thesis). Temple UniversityOCLC56772472.
  48. ^Leigh R, Oishi K, Hsu J, Lindquist M, Gottesman RF, Jarso S, et al. (August 2013). “Acute lesions that impair affective empathy”. Brain. 136(Pt 8): 2539–49. doi:1093/brain/awt177PMC 3722353PMID 23824490.
  49. ^de Sousa A, McDonald S, Rushby J (July 1, 2012). “Changes in emotional empathy, affective responsivity, and behavior following severe traumatic brain injury”. Journal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology. 34(6): 606–23. doi:1080/13803395.2012.667067PMID 22435955S2CID 44373955.
  50. ^de Sousa A, McDonald S, Rushby J, Li S, Dimoska A, James C (October 2010). “Why don’t you feel how I feel? Insight into the absence of empathy after severe traumatic brain injury”. Neuropsychologia. 48(12): 3585–95. doi:1016/j.neuropsychologia.2010.08.008PMID 20713073S2CID 25275909.
  51. Jump up to:abHoffman ML (1990). “Empathy and justice motivation”. Motivation and Emotion. 14 (2): 151–172. doi:1007/BF00991641S2CID 143830768.
  52. ^Hoffman M (2000). Empathy and Moral Development: Implications for Caring and Justice. Cambridge University Press. p. 101. ISBN9780511805851.
  53. ^Vitaglione GD, Barnett MA (December 2003). “Assessing a new dimension of empathy: Empathic anger as a predictor of helping and punishing desires”. Motivation and Emotion. 27(4): 301–25. doi:1023/A:1026231622102S2CID 143276552Archived from the original on May 14, 2011.
  54. ^Mohr P, Howells K, Gerace A, Day A, Wharton M (2007). “The role of perspective taking in anger arousal”. Personality and Individual Differences. 43(3): 507–517. doi:1016/j.paid.2006.12.019hdl:2328/36189.
  55. ^Day A, Mohr P, Howells K, Gerace A, Lim L (June 2012). “The role of empathy in anger arousal in violent offenders and university students”(PDF). International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology. 56 (4): 599–613. doi:1177/0306624X11431061hdl:2328/35889PMID 22158909S2CID 46542250.
  56. Jump up to:abBloom P (January 2017). “Empathy and Its Discontents”. Trends in Cognitive Sciences. 21 (1): 24–31. doi:1016/j.tics.2016.11.004PMID 27916513S2CID 3863278.
  57. Jump up to:abBartlett MY, DeSteno D (April 2006). “Gratitude and prosocial behavior: helping when it costs you”. Psychological Science. 17(4): 319–25. doi:1111/j.1467-9280.2006.01705.xPMID 16623689S2CID 6491264.
  58. ^Bohns, Vanessa K.; Flynn, Francis J. (January 1, 2021). “Empathy and expectations of others’ willingness to help”. Personality and Individual Differences. 168: 110368. doi:1016/j.paid.2020.110368ISSN0191-8869.
  59. ^Marjanovic Z, Struthers G (August 8, 2011). “Who Helps Natural-Disaster Victims? Assessment of Trait and Situational Predictors”(PDF). Analyses of Social Issues and Public Policy. 12 (1): 245–267. doi:1111/j.1530-2415.2011.01262.x.
  60. ^Einolf C (March 13, 2012). “Is Cognitive Empathy More Important than Affective Empathy? A Response to “Who Helps Natural-Disaster Victims?(PDF). Analyses of Social Issues and Public Policy. 12 (1): 268–271. doi:1111/j.1530-2415.2012.01281.x. Retrieved May 30, 2014.
  61. ^Davis MH, Luce C, Kraus SJ (September 1994). “The heritability of characteristics associated with dispositional empathy”. Journal of Personality. 62(3): 369–91. doi:1111/j.1467-6494.1994.tb00302.xPMID 7965564.
  62. ^Todd RM, Anderson AK (November 2009). “The neurogenetics of remembering emotions past”. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 106(45): 18881–2. Bibcode:.10618881Tdoi:10.1073/pnas.0910755106PMC 2776429PMID 19889977.
  63. ^Todd RM, Ehlers MR, Müller DJ, Robertson A, Palombo DJ, Freeman N, et al. (April 2015). “Neurogenetic variations in norepinephrine availability enhance perceptual vividness”. The Journal of Neuroscience. 35(16): 6506–16. doi:1523/JNEUROSCI.4489-14.2015PMC 6605217PMID 25904801.
  64. ^Naudts KH, Azevedo RT, David AS, van Heeringen K, Gibbs AA (September 2012). “Epistasis between 5-HTTLPR and ADRA2B polymorphisms influences attentional bias for emotional information in healthy volunteers”. The International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology. 15(8): 1027–36. doi:1017/S1461145711001295PMID 21854681. Pdf.Archived October 23, 2017, at the Wayback Machine
  65. ^Saphire-Bernstein S, Way BM, Kim HS, Sherman DK, Taylor SE (September 2011). “Oxytocin receptor gene (OXTR) is related to psychological resources”. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 108(37): 15118–22. Bibcode:.10815118Sdoi:10.1073/pnas.1113137108PMC 3174632PMID 21896752.
  66. ^Warrier V, Grasby KL, Uzefovsky F, Toro R, Smith P, Chakrabarti B, et al. (June 2018). “Genome-wide meta-analysis of cognitive empathy: heritability, and correlates with sex, neuropsychiatric conditions and cognition”. Molecular Psychiatry. 23(6): 1402–1409. doi:1038/mp.2017.122PMC 5656177PMID 28584286.
  67. Jump up to:abKeen S (2006). “A Theory of Narrative Empathy”. Narrative. 14 (3): 207–36. doi:1353/nar.2006.0015S2CID 52228354.
  68. ^Gazzola V, Aziz-Zadeh L, Keysers C (September 2006). “Empathy and the somatotopic auditory mirror system in humans”. Current Biology. 16(18): 1824–9. doi:1016/j.cub.2006.07.072PMID 16979560S2CID 5223812.
  69. ^Fan Y, Duncan NW, de Greck M, Northoff G (January 2011). “Is there a core neural network in empathy? An fMRI based quantitative meta-analysis”. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews. 35(3): 903–11. doi:1016/j.neubiorev.2010.10.009PMID 20974173S2CID 20965340.
  70. ^Keysers C, Gazzola V (December 2009). “Expanding the mirror: vicarious activity for actions, emotions, and sensations”. Current Opinion in Neurobiology. 19(6): 666–71. doi:1016/j.conb.2009.10.006PMID 19880311S2CID 2692907.
  71. ^Decety J, Moriguchi Y (November 2007). “The empathic brain and its dysfunction in psychiatric populations: implications for intervention across different clinical conditions”. BioPsychoSocial Medicine. 1(1): 22. doi:1186/1751-0759-1-22PMC 2206036PMID 18021398.
  72. ^Wicker B, Keysers C, Plailly J, Royet JP, Gallese V, Rizzolatti G (October 2003). “Both of us disgusted in My insula: the common neural basis of seeing and feeling disgust”. Neuron. 40(3): 655–64. doi:1016/S0896-6273(03)00679-2PMID 14642287.
  73. ^Keysers C, Wicker B, Gazzola V, Anton JL, Fogassi L, Gallese V (April 2004). “A touching sight: SII/PV activation during the observation and experience of touch”. Neuron. 42 (2): 335–46. doi:1016/S0896-6273(04)00156-4PMID 15091347.
  74. ^Blakemore SJ, Bristow D, Bird G, Frith C, Ward J (July 2005). “Somatosensory activations during the observation of touch and a case of vision-touch synaesthesia”. Brain. 128 (Pt 7): 1571–83. doi:1093/brain/awh500PMID 15817510.
  75. ^Morrison I, Lloyd D, di Pellegrino G, Roberts N (June 2004). “Vicarious responses to pain in anterior cingulate cortex: is empathy a multisensory issue?”. Cognitive, Affective & Behavioral Neuroscience. 4 (2): 270–8. doi:3758/cabn.4.2.270PMID 15460933.
  76. ^Jackson PL, Meltzoff AN, Decety J (February 2005). “How do we perceive the pain of others? A window into the neural processes involved in empathy”. NeuroImage. 24 (3): 771–9. CiteSeerX 1.1.391.8127doi:10.1016/j.neuroimage.2004.09.006PMID 15652312S2CID 10691796.
  77. ^Singer T, Seymour B, O’Doherty J, Kaube H, Dolan RJ, Frith CD (February 2004). “Empathy for pain involves the affective but not sensory components of pain”. Science. 303 (5661): 1157–62. Bibcode:..303.1157Sdoi:10.1126/science.1093535hdl:21.11116/0000-0001-A020-5PMID 14976305S2CID 14727944.
  78. ^Preston SD, de Waal FB (February 2002). “Empathy: Its ultimate and proximate bases”. The Behavioral and Brain Sciences. 25 (1): 1–20, discussion 20–71. doi:1017/s0140525x02000018PMID 12625087.
  79. ^Gutsell JN, Inzlicht M (2010). “Empathy constrained: Prejudice predicts reduced mental simulation of actions during observation of outgroups”. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology. 46 (5): 841–845. doi:1016/j.jesp.2010.03.011.
  80. ^Jack AI, Dawson AJ, Begany KL, Leckie RL, Barry KP, Ciccia AH, Snyder AZ (February 2013). “fMRI reveals reciprocal inhibition between social and physical cognitive domains”. NeuroImage. 66: 385–401. doi:1016/j.neuroimage.2012.10.061PMC 3602121PMID 23110882.
  81. ^Case Western Reserve University (October 30, 2012). “Empathy represses analytic thought, and vice versa: Brain physiology limits simultaneous use of both networks”Science DailyArchived from the original on October 24, 2017.
  82. ^Eres R, Decety J, Louis WR, Molenberghs P (August 2015). “Individual differences in local gray matter density are associated with differences in affective and cognitive empathy”. NeuroImage. 117: 305–10. doi:1016/j.neuroimage.2015.05.038PMID 26008886S2CID 15373798Archived from the original on September 8, 2017.
  83. ^Thomas B (November 6, 2012). “What’s so special about mirror neurons? (guest blog)”Scientific American. New York. Archived from the original on May 21, 2015.
  84. ^Marsh J (March 29, 2012). “Do mirror neurons give us empathy?”Greater Good MagazineGreater Good Science CenterArchived from the original on October 24, 2017.

See also:

Ramachandran VS (2011). The tell-tale brain: a neuroscientist’s quest for what makes us human. New York: W.W. Norton. ISBN 9780393077827.

  1. Jump up to:ab Phoebe Caldwell, “Letters”, London Times, Dec 30 2005
  2. Jump up to:ab c Baron-Cohen S (2011). Zero Degrees of Empathy: A New Theory of Human Cruelty. Penguin UK. ISBN 9780713997910. Retrieved August 8, 2013.
  3. Jump up to:ab c Bora E, Gökçen S, Veznedaroglu B (July 2008). “Empathic abilities in people with schizophrenia”. Psychiatry Research. 160(1): 23–9. doi:1016/j.psychres.2007.05.017PMID 18514324S2CID 20896840.
  4. Jump up to:ab c Decety J, Michalska KJ, Akitsuki Y, Lahey BB (February 2009). “Atypical empathic responses in adolescents with aggressive conduct disorder: a functional MRI investigation”. Biological Psychology. 80 (2): 203–11. doi:1016/j.biopsycho.2008.09.004PMC 2819310PMID 18940230.
  5. Jump up to:ab Grossman D (1996). On Killing: The Psychological Cost of Learning to Kill in War and Society. Back Bay Books. ISBN 978-0-316-33000-8.
  6. ^Simons D, Wurtele SK, Heil P (December 1, 2002). “Childhood Victimization and Lack of Empathy as Predictors of Sexual Offending Against Women and Children”. Journal of Interpersonal Violence. 17 (12): 1291–1307. doi:1177/088626002237857ISSN 0886-2605S2CID 145525384.
  7. Jump up to:ab Hill E, Berthoz S, Frith U (April 2004). “Brief report: cognitive processing of own emotions in individuals with autistic spectrum disorder and in their relatives” (PDF). Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. 34 (2): 229–35. doi:1023/B:JADD.0000022613.41399.14PMID 15162941S2CID 776386. Archived from the original (PDF) on June 19, 2013.
  8. ^Taylor, G.J. and Bagby, R.M & Parker, J.D.A. Disorders of Affect Regulation: Alexithymia in Medical and Psychiatric Illness. (1997) Cambridge Uni. Press.
  9. ^Sifneos PE (1973). “The prevalence of ‘alexithymic’ characteristics in psychosomatic patients”. Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics. 22 (2): 255–62. doi:1159/000286529PMID 4770536.
  10. ^Moriguchi Y, Decety J, Ohnishi T, Maeda M, Mori T, Nemoto K, Matsuda H, Komaki G (September 2007). “Empathy and judging other’s pain: an fMRI study of alexithymia”. Cerebral Cortex. New York, N.Y. 17 (9): 2223–34. doi:1093/cercor/bhl130PMID 17150987.
  11. ^Brackett MA, Warner RM, Bosco JS (2005). “Emotional Intelligence and Relationship Quality Among Couples” (PDF). Personal Relationships. 12 (2): 197–212. CiteSeerX 1.1.385.3719doi:10.1111/j.1350-4126.2005.00111.x. Archived from the original (PDF) on September 27, 2007.
  12. ^Yelsma P, Marrow S (January 2003). “An examination of couples’ difficulties with emotional expressiveness and their marital satisfaction”. The Journal of Family Communication. 3 (1): 41–62. doi:1207/S15327698JFC0301_03S2CID 144200365.
  13. ^Allen R, Heaton P (April 2010). “Autism, music, and the therapeutic potential of music in alexithymia” (PDF). Music Perception. 27 (4): 251–61. doi:1525/mp.2010.27.4.251.
  14. ^Bird G, Silani G, Brindley R, White S, Frith U, Singer T (May 2010). “Empathic brain responses in insula are modulated by levels of alexithymia but not autism”. Brain. 133 (Pt 5): 1515–25. doi:1093/brain/awq060PMC 2859151PMID 20371509.
  15. ^Dapretto M, Davies MS, Pfeifer JH, Scott AA, Sigman M, Bookheimer SY, Iacoboni M (January 2006). “Understanding emotions in others: mirror neuron dysfunction in children with autism spectrum disorders”. Nature Neuroscience. 9 (1): 28–30. doi:1038/nn1611PMC 3713227PMID 16327784.
  16. ^Oberman LM, Hubbard EM, McCleery JP, Altschuler EL, Ramachandran VS, Pineda JA (July 2005). “EEG evidence for mirror neuron dysfunction in autism spectrum disorders”. Brain Research. Cognitive Brain Research. 24 (2): 190–8. doi:1016/j.cogbrainres.2005.01.014PMID 15993757.
  17. ^Iacoboni, M. (2005). Understanding others: Imitation, language, empathy. Perspectives on imitation: From cognitive neuroscience to social science1, 77-99.
  18. ^Gillberg CL (July 1992). “The Emanuel Miller Memorial Lecture 1991. Autism and autistic-like conditions: subclasses among disorders of empathy”. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, and Allied Disciplines. 33 (5): 813–42. doi:1111/j.1469-7610.1992.tb01959.xPMID 1634591.
  19. ^Roeyers H, Buysse A, Ponnet K, Pichal B (February 2001). “Advancing advanced mind-reading tests: empathic accuracy in adults with a pervasive developmental disorder”. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, and Allied Disciplines. 42 (2): 271–8. doi:1017/s0021963001006680PMID 11280423.
  20. ^Hamilton AF (August 2009). “Goals, intentions and mental states: challenges for theories of autism”. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, and Allied Disciplines. 50 (8): 881–92. CiteSeerX 1.1.621.6275doi:10.1111/j.1469-7610.2009.02098.xPMID 19508497.
  21. ^McDonald, Nicole M., and Daniel S. Messinger. “The development of empathy: How, when, and why.” Moral Behavior and Free Will: A Neurobiological and Philosophical Aprroach(2011): 341-368.
  22. Jump up to:ab c Baron-Cohen S (March 2009). “Autism: the empathizing-systemizing (E-S) theory”. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences. 1156 (The Year in Cognitive Neuroscience 2009): 68–80. Bibcode:..68Bdoi:10.1111/j.1749-6632.2009.04467.xPMID 19338503S2CID 1440395.
  23. ^Baron-Cohen S, Knickmeyer RC, Belmonte MK (November 2005). “Sex differences in the brain: implications for explaining autism” (PDF). Science. 310 (5749): 819–23. Bibcode:..310..819Bdoi:10.1126/science.1115455PMID 16272115S2CID 44330420Archived (PDF) from the original on July 19, 2018. Retrieved November 21, 2018.Pdf. Archived May 17, 2017, at the Wayback Machine

Extracted in:

Kessel C (November 15, 2011). “Half of Women Do Not Have “Female Brains” (blog)”. Mathematics and Education via WordPress. Archived from the original on August 16, 2017.

  1. ^Auyeung B, Baron-Cohen S, Ashwin E, Knickmeyer R, Taylor K, Hackett G (February 2009). “Fetal testosterone and autistic traits” (PDF). British Journal of Psychology. 100 (Pt 1): 1–22. doi:1348/000712608X311731hdl:20.500.11820/3012e64e-48e9-46fb-b47e-8a8a7853b4dePMID 18547459Archived (PDF) from the original on November 22, 2018. Retrieved November 21, 2018. Pdf. Archived August 9, 2017, at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^“Testosterone may reduce empathy by reducing brain connectivity”. PsyPost. March 31, 2016. Archived from the original on April 2, 2016. Retrieved April 3, 2016.
  3. ^“Autism ‘affects male and female brains differentlyBBC News. August 9, 2013. Archived from the original on August 9, 2013. Retrieved August 9, 2013.
  4. ^Pondé MP, Rousseau C (May 2013). “Immigrant Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder: The Relationship between the Perspective of the Professionals and the Parents’ Point of View”. Journal of the Canadian Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. 22 (2): 131–8. PMC 3647629PMID 23667359.
  5. ^Dealberto MJ (May 2011). “Prevalence of autism according to maternal immigrant status and ethnic origin”. Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica. 123 (5): 339–48. doi:1111/j.1600-0447.2010.01662.xPMID 21219265S2CID 22927622.
  6. ^Cleckly HC (1941). “The Mask of Sanity: An attempt to Reinterpret the So-Called Psychopathic Personality”. St. Louis, MO: Mosby.
  7. ^Hare RD (1991). “The Hare Psychopathy Checklist-Revised”. Toronto: Multi Health Systems.
  8. ^Skeem JL, Polaschek DL, Patrick CJ, Lilienfeld SO (December 2011). “Psychopathic Personality: Bridging the Gap Between Scientific Evidence and Public Policy”. Psychological Science in the Public Interest. 12 (3): 95–162. doi:1177/1529100611426706PMID 26167886S2CID 8521465Archived from the original on February 22, 2016.
  9. ^Patrick C (2005). Handbook of Psychopathy. Guilford Press. ISBN 978-1-60623-804-2.[page needed]
  10. ^Andrade J (March 23, 2009). Handbook of Violence Risk Assessment and Treatment: New Approaches for Mental Health Professionals. New York, NY: Springer Publishing Company. ISBN 978-0-8261-9904-1. Retrieved January 5, 2014.
  11. ^WHO (2010) ICD-10: Clinical descriptions and diagnostic guidelines: Disorders of adult personality and behaviorArchived March 23, 2014, at the Wayback Machine
  12. ^Decety J, Skelly L (2013). “The neural underpinnings of the experience of empathy: Lessons for psychopathy.”. In Ochsner KN, Kosslyn SM (eds.). The Oxford Handbook of Cognitive Neuroscience. 2. New York: Oxford University Press. pp. 228–243.
  13. ^Kiehl KA (June 2006). “A cognitive neuroscience perspective on psychopathy: evidence for paralimbic system dysfunction”. Psychiatry Research. 142 (2–3): 107–28. doi:1016/j.psychres.2005.09.013PMC 2765815PMID 16712954.
  14. ^Blair RJ (October 1995). “A cognitive developmental approach to mortality: investigating the psychopath” (PDF). Cognition. 57(1): 1–29. doi:1016/0010-0277(95)00676-pPMID 7587017S2CID 16366546. Archived from the original (PDF) on July 21, 2013.
  15. ^Blair RJ (January 2003). “Neurobiological basis of psychopathy”. The British Journal of Psychiatry. 182: 5–7. doi:1192/bjp.182.1.5PMID 12509310.
  16. Jump up to:ab “Psychopathy” by Quinton 2006
  17. Jump up to:ab Blair RJ, Colledge E, Mitchell DG (December 2001). “Somatic markers and response reversal: is there orbitofrontal cortex dysfunction in boys with psychopathic tendencies?”. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology. 29 (6): 499–511. doi:1023/A:1012277125119PMID 11761284S2CID 1951812.
  18. Jump up to:ab Blair RJ, Mitchell DG, Richell RA, Kelly S, Leonard A, Newman C, Scott SK (November 2002). “Turning a deaf ear to fear: impaired recognition of vocal affect in psychopathic individuals”. Journal of Abnormal Psychology. 111 (4): 682–6. doi:1037/0021-843x.111.4.682PMID 12428783.
  19. Jump up to:ab Stevens D, Charman T, Blair RJ (June 2001). “Recognition of emotion in facial expressions and vocal tones in children with psychopathic tendencies”. The Journal of Genetic Psychology. 162 (2): 201–11. doi:1080/00221320109597961PMID 11432605S2CID 42581610.
  20. ^Decety J, Skelly L, Yoder KJ, Kiehl KA (February 2014). “Neural processing of dynamic emotional facial expressions in psychopaths”. Social Neuroscience. 9 (1): 36–49. doi:1080/17470919.2013.866905PMC 3970241PMID 24359488.
  21. ^Dawel A, O’Kearney R, McKone E, Palermo R (November 2012). “Not just fear and sadness: meta-analytic evidence of pervasive emotion recognition deficits for facial and vocal expressions in psychopathy”. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews. 36 (10): 2288–304. doi:1016/j.neubiorev.2012.08.006hdl:1885/19765PMID 22944264S2CID 2596760.
  22. ^Hogenboom M (July 25, 2013). “Psychopathic criminals have empathy switch”. BBC News. Archived from the original on July 27, 2013. Retrieved July 28, 2013.
  23. ^Lewis T (July 24, 2013). “Cold-hearted Psychopaths Feel Empathy Too”. Live Science.
  24. ^Decety J, Skelly LR, Kiehl KA (June 2013). “Brain response to empathy-eliciting scenarios involving pain in incarcerated individuals with psychopathy”. JAMA Psychiatry. 70 (6): 638–45. doi:1001/jamapsychiatry.2013.27PMC 3914759PMID 23615636.
  25. ^Decety J, Chen C, Harenski C, Kiehl KA (2013). “An fMRI study of affective perspective taking in individuals with psychopathy: imagining another in pain does not evoke empathy”. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience. 7: 489. doi:3389/fnhum.2013.00489PMC 3782696PMID 24093010.
  26. ^Mullins-Nelson JL, Salekin RT, Anne-Marie RT, Leistico RL (2006). “Psychopathy, Empathy, and Perspective -Taking Ability in a Community Sample: Implications for the Successful Psychopathy Concept”. International Journal of Forensic Mental Health. 5 (2): 133–149. doi:1080/14999013.2006.10471238S2CID 143760402.
  27. ^Winter K, Spengler S, Bermpohl F, Singer T, Kanske P (April 2017). “Social cognition in aggressive offenders: Impaired empathy, but intact theory of mind”. Scientific Reports. 7 (1): 670. Bibcode:..7..670Wdoi:10.1038/s41598-017-00745-0PMC 5429629PMID 28386118.
  28. ^Barrett LF (2017). How Emotions are Made: The Secret Life of the Brain.
  29. ^Atkins D (2014). The Role of Culture in Empathy: The Consequences and Explanations of Cultural Differences in Empathy at the Affective and Cognitive Levels.
  30. ^Minzenberg MJ, Fisher-Irving M, Poole JH, Vinogradov S (February 2006). “Reduced Self-Referential Source Memory Performance is Associated with Interpersonal Dysfunction in Borderline Personality Disorder” (PDF). Journal of Personality Disorders. 20 (1): 42–54. doi:1521/pedi.2006.20.1.42PMID 16563078Archived (PDF) from the original on May 16, 2013.
  31. Jump up to:ab c d Harari H, Shamay-Tsoory SG, Ravid M, Levkovitz Y (February 2010). “Double dissociation between cognitive and affective empathy in borderline personality disorder”. Psychiatry Research. 175 (3): 277–9. doi:1016/j.psychres.2009.03.002PMID 20045198S2CID 27303466.
  32. ^Wagner AW, Linehan MM (1999). “Facial expression recognition ability among women with borderline personality disorder: implications for emotion regulation?”. Journal of Personality Disorders. 13 (4): 329–44. doi:1521/pedi.1999.13.4.329PMID 10633314.
  33. ^Lynch TR, Rosenthal MZ, Kosson DS, Cheavens JS, Lejuez CW, Blair RJ (November 2006). “Heightened sensitivity to facial expressions of emotion in borderline personality disorder”. Emotion. 6 (4): 647–655. doi:1037/1528-3542.6.4.647PMID 17144755.
  34. ^Narcissistic personality disorder Archived January 18, 2013, at today – Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders Fourth edition Text Revision (DSM-IV-TR) American Psychiatric Association (2000)
  35. ^“Schizoid personality disorder”Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (Fourth (DSM-IV-TR) ed.). American Psychiatric Association. 2000. Archived from the original on January 18, 2013.
  36. ^Guntrip H (1969). Schizoid Phenomena, Object-Relations, and The Self. New York: International Universities Press.
  37. ^Ralph Klein- pp. 13–23 in Disorders of the Self: New Therapeutic Horizons, Brunner/Mazel (1995).
  38. Jump up to:ab Shamay-Tsoory S, Harari H, Szepsenwol O, Levkovitz Y (2009). “Neuropsychological evidence of impaired cognitive empathy in euthymic bipolar disorder”. The Journal of Neuropsychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences. 21 (1): 59–67. doi:1176/jnp.2009.21.1.59PMID 19359453.
  39. ^McAlinden M (2014). “Can teachers know learners’ minds? Teacher empathy and learner body language in English language teaching”. In Dunworth K, Zhang G (eds.). Critical perspectives on language education: Australia and the Asia Pacific. Cham, Switzerland: Springer. pp. 71–100. ISBN 9783319061856.
  40. Jump up to:ab Tettegah S, Anderson CJ (2007). “Pre-service teachers’ empathy and cognitions: Statistical analysis of text data by graphical models”. Contemporary Educational Psychology32 (1): 48–82. doi:1016/j.cedpsych.2006.10.010.
  41. ^Cornelius-White JH, Harbaugh AP (2010). Learner-Centered Instruction. Thousand Oaks, CA, London, New Delhi, Singapore: SAGE Publications.
  42. ^Rogers CR, Lyon Jr HC, Tausch R (2013). On Becoming an Effective Teacher – Person-centered teaching, psychology, philosophy, anddialogues. London: Routledge. ISBN 978-0-415-81698-4.
  43. ^Keillor RM (1999). Empathy and intergroup relations: a study in cross-cultural relationship building (PhD thesis). Arizona State UniversityOCLC 44999879.
  44. ^William Weeks, Paul Pedersen, & Richard Brislin (1979). A Manual of Structured Experiences for Cultural Learning. La Grange P ark, IL: Intercultural Network.
  45. ^Divine World College (2016), Bachelor of Arts in Intercultural Studies program, Epworth, IA.
  46. ^Sue Brown and Joyce Osland (2016), Developing Cultural Diversity Competency. University of Portland.
  47. ^Batson CD, Moran T (1999). “Empathy-induced altruism in a prisoner’s dilemma”. Eur. J. Soc. Psychol. 29 (7): 909–924. doi:1002/(sici)1099-0992(199911)29:7<909::aid-ejsp965>;2-l.
  48. ^Snyder CR, Lopez SJ, eds. (2009). Oxford Handbook of Positive Psychology (Second ed.). Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 243–44.
  49. ^Lopez SJ, Pedrotti JT, Snyder CR (2011). Positive Psychology: The Scientific and Practical Explorations of Human Strengths(Second ed.). Los Angeles: SAGE. pp. 267–75.
  50. ^“Empathy”. March 31, 2008. Retrieved August 29, 2012.
  51. ^“Does Empathy Have a Dark Side?”.
  52. ^Eisenberg N, Miller PA (January 1987). “The relation of empathy to prosocial and related behaviors”. Psychological Bulletin. 101(1): 91–119. doi:1037/0033-2909.101.1.91PMID 3562705.
  53. ^Bjorkqvist K, Osterman K, Kaukiainen A (2000). “Social intelligence – empathy = aggression?”. Aggression and Violent Behavior. 5 (2): 191–200. doi:1016/s1359-1789(98)00029-9.
  54. ^Geer JH, Estupinan LA, Manguno-Mire GM (2000). “Empathy, social skills, and other relevant cognitive processes in rapists and child molesters”. Aggression and Violent Behavior. 5 (1): 99–126. doi:1016/s1359-1789(98)00011-1.
  55. ^Segal SA, Gerdes KE, Lietz CA (2017). Assessing Empathy. Columbia University Press. pp. 79–81. ISBN 978-0-231-54388-0.
  56. ^Levenson RW, Ruef AM (1997). “Physiological aspects of emotional knowledge and rapport.”. In Ickes WJ (ed.). Empathic Accuracy. New York, NY: The Guilford Press. pp. 44–72. ISBN 978-1-57230-161-0.
  57. ^Hoffman (2000), p. 62 harvp error: multiple targets (2×): CITEREFHoffman2000 (help)
  58. ^Hein G, Silani G, Preuschoff K, Batson CD, Singer T (October 2010). “Neural responses to ingroup and outgroup members’ suffering predict individual differences in costly helping”. Neuron. 68 (1): 149–60. doi:1016/j.neuron.2010.09.003PMID 20920798.
  59. ^Goleman D (2005). Emotional intelligence (in Danish). New York: Bantam Books. ISBN 978-0-553-38371-3OCLC 61770783.
  60. ^Weiner IB, Craighead WE (2010). The Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology. John Wiley & Sons. p. 810. ISBN 978-0-470-17026-7.
  61. Jump up to:ab Gerace A, Day A, Casey S, Mohr P (2015). “Perspective taking and empathy: Does having similar past experience to another person make it easier to take their perspective?”(PDF). Journal of Relationships Research. 6: e10, 1–14. doi:1017/jrr.2015.6hdl:2328/35813S2CID 146270695.
  62. Jump up to:ab Hodges SD, Kiel KJ, Kramer AD, Veach D, Villanueva BR (March 2010). “Giving birth to empathy: the effects of similar experience on empathic accuracy, empathic concern, and perceived empathy”. Personality & Social Psychology Bulletin. 36(3): 398–409. doi:1177/0146167209350326PMID 19875825S2CID 23104368.
  63. ^Wyschogrod E (February 1981). “Empathy and sympathy as tactile encounter”. The Journal of Medicine and Philosophy. 6 (1): 25–43. doi:1093/jmp/6.1.25PMID 7229562.
  64. ^Solon O (July 12, 2012). “Compassion over empathy could help prevent emotional burnout”. Wired UK. Archived from the original on May 15, 2016.
  65. ^Klimecki OSinger T (2012). “Empathic distress fatigue rather than compassion fatigue? Integrating findings from empathy research in psychology and social neuroscience.” (PDF). In Oakley B, Knafo A, Madhavan G, Wilson DS (eds.). Pathological Altruism. USA: Oxford University Press. pp. 368–383. ISBN 978-0-19-973857-1.
  66. ^Tone EB, Tully EC (November 2014). “Empathy as a “risky strength”: a multilevel examination of empathy and risk for internalizing disorders”. Development and Psychopathology. 26(4 Pt 2): 1547–65. doi:1017/S0954579414001199PMC 4340688PMID 25422978.
  67. ^King I (2008). How to Make Good Decisions and Be Right All the Time: Solving the Riddle of Right and Wrong. ISBN 978-1-84706-347-2.
  68. ^King I (October 16, 2008). How to Make Good Decisions and Be Right All the Time. Continuum. p. 74. ISBN 978-1-84706-347-2. Retrieved August 28, 2013. Empathy is special, because it always and automatically has the characteristics of right and wrong … Something rooted in empathy must have more of the essence of good about it than something which is not.
  69. ^King I (2008). How to Make Good Decisions and Be Right All the Time. London: Continuum. p. 227. ISBN 978-1-84706-347-2.
  70. ^A Buddhist account of Iain King’s ideas is set out in “Iain King – Ethics”. Global Oneness. Archived from the original on October 20, 2012.
  71. ^Publishers Weekly state that “King is even able to formulate a credible rule that tells us when to lie”  ArchivedNovember 17, 2015, at the Wayback Machine
  72. ^The Ethics of Care and Empathy, Michael Slote, Oxford University Press, 2007
  73. ^Empathy in the Context of Philosophy, Lou Agosta, Palgrave/Macmillan, 2010
  74. ^Jenkins, K. (1991) Re-thinking History London: Routledge
  75. ^Pozzi, G. (1976) Prefazione 6. L’elemento storico e politico -sociale, in G.B. Marino, L’Adone Milano
  76. ^Aronson E, Wilson TD, Akert R (2007). Social Psychology(6th ed.). Prentice HallISBN 978-0-13-238245-8.
  77. ^“Wired To Care”. Archived from the original on December 10, 2008.
  78. ^Miyashiro MR (2011). The Empathy Factor: Your Competitive Advantage for Personal, Team, and Business Success. Puddledancer Press. p. 256. ISBN 978-1-892005-25-0.
  79. ^Dowden C (June 21, 2013). “Forget ethics training: Focus on empathy”. The National Post. Archived from the original on July 24, 2013.
  80. ^“The Importance of Empathy in the Workplace”. Center for Creative Leadership. Retrieved November 10, 2020.
  81. ^Truax, C. B. (1967). Rating of Accurate Empathy. The Therapeutic Relationship and its Impact. A Study of Psychotherapy with Schizophrenics. Eds. C. R. Rogers, E. T. Gendlin, D. J. Kiesler and C. B. Truax. Madison, Wisconsin, The University of Wisconsin Press pp. 555–568.
  82. ^Mehrabian A, Epstein N (December 1972). “A measure of emotional empathy”. Journal of Personality. 40 (4): 525–43. doi:1111/j.1467-6494.1972.tb00078.xPMID 4642390.
  83. Jump up to:abg. Levenson RW, Ruef AM (August 1992). “Empathy: a physiological substrate” (PDF). Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 63 (2): 234–46. doi:10.1037/0022-3514.63.2.234PMID 1403614S2CID 12650202. Archived from the original (PDF) on July 30, 2020.Leslie KR, Johnson-Frey SH, Grafton ST (February 2004). “Functional imaging of face and hand imitation: towards a motor theory of empathy”. NeuroImage. 21 (2): 601–7. doi:10.1016/j.neuroimage.2003.09.038PMID 14980562S2CID 1723495.
  84. ^Denham SA, McKinley M, Couchoud EA, Holt R (August 1990). “Emotional and behavioral predictors of preschool peer ratings”. Child Development. JSTOR. 61 (4): 1145–52. doi:2307/1130882JSTOR 1130882PMID 2209184.
  85. ^Barnett MA (1984). “Similarity of experience and empathy in preschoolers”. Journal of Genetic Psychology. 145 (2): 241–250. doi:1080/00221325.1984.10532271.
  86. ^g. Geher, Warner & Brown (2001)
  87. ^g. Mehrabian & Epstein (1972)
  88. ^g. Davis MH (1980). “A multidimensional approach to individual differences in empathy”. JSAS Catalogue of Selected Documents in Psychology. 10(4): 1–17.
  89. ^Chen D, Lew R, Hershman W, Orlander J (October 2007). “A cross-sectional measurement of medical student empathy”. Journal of General Internal Medicine. 22 (10): 1434–8. doi:1007/s11606-007-0298-xPMC 2305857PMID 17653807.
  90. ^Baron-Cohen S, Wheelwright S (April 2004). “The empathy quotient: an investigation of adults with Asperger syndrome or high functioning autism, and normal sex differences” (PDF). Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. 34 (2): 163–75. doi:1023/B:JADD.0000022607.19833.00PMID 15162935S2CID 2663853. Archived from the original (PDF) on March 4, 2015.
  91. ^Reniers RL, Corcoran R, Drake R, Shryane NM, Völlm BA (January 2011). “The QCAE: a Questionnaire of Cognitive and Affective Empathy”. Journal of Personality Assessment. 93 (1): 84–95. doi:1080/00223891.2010.528484PMID 21184334S2CID 3035172.
  92. ^Innamorati M, Ebisch SJ, Gallese V, Saggino A (April 29, 2019). “A bidimensional measure of empathy: Empathic Experience Scale”. PLOS ONE. 14 (4): e0216164. Bibcode:.1416164Idoi:10.1371/journal.pone.0216164PMC 6488069PMID 31034510.
  93. ^Chopik WJ, O’Brien E, Konrath SH (2017). “Differences in Empathic Concern and Perspective Taking Across 63 Countries”. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology. 48 (1). Supplementary Table 1. doi:1177/0022022116673910hdl:1805/14139ISSN 0022-0221S2CID 149314942.
  94. ^Clay Z, de Waal FB (November 2013). “Development of socio-emotional competence in bonobos”. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 110 (45): 18121–6. Bibcode:.11018121Cdoi:10.1073/pnas.1316449110PMC 3831480PMID 24127600.
  95. ^Romero T, Castellanos MA, de Waal FB (July 2010). “Consolation as possible expression of sympathetic concern among chimpanzees”. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 107 (27): 12110–5. Bibcode:.10712110Rdoi:10.1073/pnas.1006991107PMC 2901437PMID 20547864.
  96. ^Hollis K (March 2013). “A comparative analysis of precision rescue behaviour in sand-dwelling ants”. British Journal of Animal Behaviour. Animal Behaviour. 85 (3): 537–544. doi:1016/j.anbehav.2012.12.005S2CID 53179078.
  97. ^Custance D, Mayer J (September 2012). “Empathic-like responding by domestic dogs (Canis familiaris) to distress in humans: an exploratory study” (PDF). Animal Cognition. 15 (5): 851–9. doi:1007/s10071-012-0510-1PMID 22644113S2CID 15153091.
  98. ^Edgar JL, Paul ES, Nicol CJ (August 2013). “Protective Mother Hens: Cognitive influences on the avian maternal response”. British Journal of Animal Behaviour. 86 (2): 223–229. doi:1016/j.anbehav.2013.05.004S2CID 53179718.
  99. ^Miralles A, Raymond M, Lecointre G (December 2019). “Empathy and compassion toward other species decrease with evolutionary divergence time”. Scientific Reports. 9 (1): 19555. Bibcode:..919555Mdoi:10.1038/s41598-019-56006-9PMC 6925286PMID 31862944.

Toward a consensus on the nature of empathy: A review of reviews


Empathy and Active Listening

Powerful Questions

© Article translated from the book “Ascolto attivo ed empatia. I segreti di una comunicazione efficace“. copyright Dr. Daniele Trevisani Intercultural Negotiation Training and Coaching, published with the author’s permission. The Book’s rights are on sale and are available. If you are interested in publishing the book in any language, or seek Intercultural Negotiation Training, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting, please feel free to contact Dr. Daniele Trevisani.

Questions that Open Up the Person’s World 

As we listen, we know that every word or sentence does not exist alone but is part of pre-existing mental networks and knots, which are touched by communication. 

  1. Each message that touches a point inside a network of meanings stimulates the meanings close to that point.
  2. Messages that pass through cognitive networks and belief systems can change the structure of the network itself. 

Powerful questions can change your mind. Not only they can help us explore people’s inner worlds, but they can also change them by helping the client increase his/her own self-awareness. Receiving the permission/request to ask them, as happens in psychotherapy sessions, is enough. 

Here below you can find some examples of powerful questions, but be aware that they must be used wisely, with professional attitude, and only after receiving the client’s permission: 

  1. How long have you not felt happy? 
  2. What is the atmosphere in your home? 
  3. What do you think is possible and what do you think is impossible in your life? 
  4. What stage are you living in your life? 
  5. What have you not yet dealt with in your life? 
  6. What gives life meaning to you? 
  7. How soon would you like to feel happy? 
  8. What’s the worst thing that doesn’t have to happen in your life? 
  9. What were the worst moments of your life? 
  10. Why did we get there? 
  11. How long have you not felt carefree? 
  12. Who do you feel good with? 
  13. When do you feel good? 
  14. What are the people who give you energy and those who take away that energy from you? 
  15. Do you feel capable of planning your future? 
  16. Do you usually plan something in the day, week, month, year, several years, ever? 
  17. What is the worst offense they could cause you? 
  18. What does an existential refuge represent for you? Where do you go to heal yourself? 
  19. What would you like to do in life before you die?  
  20. How do you feel in the presence of X? (Where X is a significant person) 
  21. What do you need to pay attention to most, in order to improve your life? 
  22. Do you think you have the strength to change something in your life? 
  23. You told me that sometimes you feel like you are in a blender (reformulation). When exactly does it happen, in what situations? 
  24. Are there victims of your actions or behaviours or ways of doing things? 
  25. Who or what do you care most about in life? 
  26. If you had a magic wand and you could make 3 wishes, what would they be? 
  27. What are the quiet moments in which you regenerate? 
  28. Are they enough? 
  29. What are the confusing moments in your life? 
  30. Do you feel that you always have the right energy to face all the situations? 
  31. What is worth fighting for in life, in your opinion? 
  32. What are you fighting for? 
  33. How many energies do you have when you get up in the morning? 
  34. How are your energies when you go to sleep, what are the prevailing thoughts? 
  35. In which moments do you feel more outgoing and in which more introverted? 
  36. What is the thing that would make you say “I did it!”? 
  37. What battles did you give up? 
  38. What are the 2 most negative and the 2 most positive aspects about yourself, in your opinion? 
  39. What would a “plan B” be all right for your life? What options are there? 
  40. When did you feel hurt? 
  41. When did you feel happy beyond all limits? 
  42. If we could identify a micro-action already feasible today or tomorrow, what would that be? 


Some of these questions can be asked with special mental training techniques, while lying down with your eyes closed, but this requires a special type of training, because trying to read yourself deeply is not easy and, in that condition the complexity of your inner world increases, and so do the emotional responses, including emotions that lead to crying, anger, suffering, joy, etc. 

Being able to manage these reactions requires special training, at least a counselling course or an advanced coaching course. 

Releasing these responses and the emotions that accompany them is good, since it breaks the “Spiral of Silence” which, like a disease, suffocates people, companies, organizations and entire societies. 

Please note that these questions are specifically used in coaching, counselling, therapy, leadership, and other professional situations involving adults. They should not be used “just to try” especially in family environments and with children or adolescents who are unable to metabolize the emotional weight that these questions create. 

© Article translated from the book “Ascolto attivo ed empatia. I segreti di una comunicazione efficace“. copyright Dr. Daniele Trevisani Intercultural Negotiation Training and Coaching, published with the author’s permission. The Book’s rights are on sale and are available. If you are interested in publishing the book in any language, or seek Intercultural Negotiation Training, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting, please feel free to contact Dr. Daniele Trevisani.

Empathy and Active Listening

Listening to the Means-End-Chains 

© Article translated from the book “Ascolto attivo ed empatia. I segreti di una comunicazione efficace“. copyright Dr. Daniele Trevisani Intercultural Negotiation Training and Coaching, published with the author’s permission. The Book’s rights are on sale and are available. If you are interested in publishing the book in any language, or seek Intercultural Negotiation Training, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting, please feel free to contact Dr. Daniele Trevisani.

Beliefs are the engine of behaviour. Beliefs can be useful (e.g., if I eat fruit and vegetables, it will be good for me) or lethal (e.g., If I drive fast, nothing will happen to me). 

Listening to beliefs means looking for convictions (rooted beliefs or peripheral beliefs) that the interlocutor consciously or unconsciously expresses. In fact, beliefs are partly conscious, but largely unconscious, not verbalized. Like a swirling wind, beliefs surround people and offer no room to look beyond. If I watch a person lift a barbell, I can think that he has nothing else to do or that he wants to hurt himself, or else I can try to understand why he does it. Most likely, that mechanical gesture – in his view of things – has the purpose of stimulating muscle, burning fat, getting a better physical shape. This way he will like himself more until finally accepting himself. Welcome, we are in a gym. Now, that physical gesture makes sense. At least part of the total sense. But if we ask this person what he is doing, he will hardly say “I want to be more seductive and self-realized“. On the contrary, he will probably say: “I’m working out to stay fit”. We can therefore say that, behind every word or action that we observe (means), there is a purpose that we can discover (end). The Means-End Chain is the basic mechanism through which value is created. 

Let’s look at an analysis carried out in relation to the product “lean yoghurt”. 

The chain in the picture shows several “promises” (on the right) that the customer perceives associated with as many “states” of the product (on the left), up to the point that they become values. 

We note: 

  • concrete attribute (low percentage of fat); 
  • a more intangible and derived attribute connected to it (abstract attribute: fewer calories); 
  • functional consequences (weight loss); 
  • psychosocial consequences (higher social acceptance); 
  • instrumental values (greater self-confidence, increased self-confidence or self-confidence); 
  • Terminal and deeper values of the individual: the increase of self-esteem. 

The analysis of the Means-End Chains highlights a critical point: listening to words means nothing if they remain disconnected from the semantic spheres (areas of meanings) and from the emotions behind them. 

At least 5 “Why” questions are needed to reach a terminal value, and sometimes even more. 

Being aware of the means-end-chains is also essential for asking deep questions in an active listening approach. 

The low-fat content of a yoghurt is not positive or negative, it can be both: for a bricklayer who needs the energy to tackle a strenuous job, a low calorific value is absolutely negative, while for a model stuffed with mental images of thinness, obsessed with staying in shape, is a positive element. The chain exposed above can be one of the several chains that can create a semantic value of the product, but what is more important is that it is subjective. We can also make mistakes trying to understand it, especially when we try to fill the gaps with our personal beliefs. 

Knowing how to listen deeply means coming to realize why people do what they do, finally understanding their means-end chains. We won’t be able to guide a person in a change until we can understand the active means-end-chains, because we are like boats looking for an island surrounded by fog. Being able to listen to the means-ends chains, on the other hand, means shedding light on the reasons behind certain behaviours. This technique is also essential for “cultivating motivation” during coaching sessions, which means unleashing motivation towards positive goals. Because deep and active questions are never neutral towards destiny: questions change people. 

© Article translated from the book “Ascolto attivo ed empatia. I segreti di una comunicazione efficace“. copyright Dr. Daniele Trevisani Intercultural Negotiation Training and Coaching, published with the author’s permission. The Book’s rights are on sale and are available. If you are interested in publishing the book in any language, or seek Intercultural Negotiation Training, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting, please feel free to contact Dr. Daniele Trevisani.


Listening using only your own filter of opinions and values without accepting that there may be others 

© Article translated from the book “Ascolto attivo ed empatia. I segreti di una comunicazione efficace“. copyright Dr. Daniele Trevisani Intercultural Negotiation Training and Coaching, published with the author’s permission. The Book’s rights are on sale and are available. If you are interested in publishing the book in any language, or seek Intercultural Negotiation Training, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting, please feel free to contact Dr. Daniele Trevisani.

Listening while having prejudices is a wrong starting point. I call this “filtered listening” and it is normal, even natural. It happens every day. We judge any news that we hear based on our values and that’s even right. 

If we want to practice an active listening, thinking that the person we are listening to has exactly our value filters and mind maps is wrong. We must not take his/her answers for granted, and we must not get irritated when those answers are not what we expected or what we wanted them to be. They are not the answers we would have given. Active listening must always be neutral. 

In the flow of communication, we can hear something that will inevitably go against some of our opinions, values and more solid principles. 

As soon as this “against” data emerges, there’s the risk of becoming rigid and we may stop listening. On the other hand, it is essential for an advanced listener to know how to “suspend judgment” while listening to the entire communication flow, by postponing the “judgment phase” until it is time to do so. 

Every powerful question is like a goal hitting into the other party’s mind: if it gets blocked or doesn’t work, we might get angry. Let’s listen to our emotions without getting affected by them. Let’s move on: nobody is perfect but everyone can improve, even in listening. 

Listening in the Cloud 

Participating in listening means suspending our mental rumination and practicing mindfulness, bringing our mind “there” to listening. It means just listening while turning off all other thoughts. 

Listening “in the Cloud” is a type of listening practiced while our mind gets lost in thought, losing the focus. 

It basically consists in letting the words heard rumble in your head. It is normal that, while we listen, thoughts, memories, reflections come up. Equally normal is that internal reverberations can be created due to what we hear and other thoughts. 

All these thoughts can form a “cloud of thoughts” that completely absorbs our attention. In this way, our attention becomes self-centred – directed only towards ourselves – and we stop listening, even if the other “emits” words, these do not enter in our mind, becoming pure background noise. 

This “listening in the Cloud” can and must be interrupted by: 

  • moments of brief reformulation (so you were in Rome, right?), 
  • questions (in which area of Rome?), 
  • moments of recapitulation (If I understand correctly the story went like this …) 
  • non-verbal head movements (e.g., when we understand a concept we can say yes with the head, which does not mean that we agree but only that we have understood what our interlocutor is saying) 
  • short paraverbal punctuation (e.g., ah, uhm, ok) – paralinguistic messages serve as punctuation. 

The absence of background noises or distractors such as televisions, telephones, chats, and other disturbing elements, is fundamental. It is also possible to openly say: “I’m getting lost, you talked about David, and then what?” 

We can say without a doubt that at the basis of a communication/listening in the cloud there are chaos, mental disorder, an entropy state (degradation of a system towards chaos) where we are not able to understand each other. 

On the contrary, an active listening can produce a greater information order, it can pull out information, data, signals, emotions, and give them an order to create meaning. Not a small job. 

Empathic listening, by nature, is a process against chaos, entropy and the confusion of signals and meanings. 


© Article translated from the book “Ascolto attivo ed empatia. I segreti di una comunicazione efficace“. copyright Dr. Daniele Trevisani Intercultural Negotiation Training and Coaching, published with the author’s permission. The Book’s rights are on sale and are available. If you are interested in publishing the book in any language, or seek Intercultural Negotiation Training, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting, please feel free to contact Dr. Daniele Trevisani.

Empathy and Active Listening

The Most Common Listening Mistakes 

© Article translated from the book “Ascolto attivo ed empatia. I segreti di una comunicazione efficace“. copyright Dr. Daniele Trevisani Intercultural Negotiation Training and Coaching, published with the author’s permission. The Book’s rights are on sale and are available. If you are interested in publishing the book in any language, or seek Intercultural Negotiation Training, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting, please feel free to contact Dr. Daniele Trevisani.

Given the complexity and variety of cases and situations, it is normal to think that, when we ask a question or listen to someone, our mind stays open to whatever information comes in. 

Actually, we can make the following prevalent mistakes.  


We just listen to confirm that we are right. Issues of cognitive dissonance in us and in the client 

I called this type of listening “confirmatory listening“, meaning that it only seeks confirmation of being right: the act of listening becomes only a formality before deciding that, just as we thought, we were quite right. 

This type of listening discards much of the incoming information, and, above all, it does not capture those dubious signals that people send out through micro expressions, body gestures and facial expressions that can communicate disapproval, disgust, or surprise. 

It is well known that people carefully avoid exposing themselves to information sources that can disturb their cognitive balances, leading to cognitive dissonances. 

The concept of Cognitive Dissonance was introduced by Leon Festinger and mainly used in social psychology to describe a particular mental processing, where one’s own beliefs, notions and opinions related to a certain topic are in contrast with each other. 

Sometimes we don’t want to know, or we literally prefer not to know something that would alter what we think is true and right. 

Listening to people and their cognitive dissonances is a fundamental exercise. 

Repeating in front of a client a dissonance exactly as it emerged opens the doors to a deep change: e.g., “if I understand correctly, you said that X …, but now you say that Y …“, where X and Y are two conflicting statements made by the same person, who does not realize the existing conflict. 

Of course, the same goes for us. When we discover a cognitive dissonance in us, we must examine it, asking for professional support, like coaching, counselling or therapy, because “holding in the dissonances” means “holding in mental confusion and pain”. 

© Article translated from the book “Ascolto attivo ed empatia. I segreti di una comunicazione efficace“. copyright Dr. Daniele Trevisani Intercultural Negotiation Training and Coaching, published with the author’s permission. The Book’s rights are on sale and are available. If you are interested in publishing the book in any language, or seek Intercultural Negotiation Training, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting, please feel free to contact Dr. Daniele Trevisani.

Empathy and Active Listening

Listeningto Belief Systems 

© Article translated from the book “Ascolto attivo ed empatia. I segreti di una comunicazione efficace“. copyright Dr. Daniele Trevisani Intercultural Negotiation Training and Coaching, published with the author’s permission. The Book’s rights are on sale and are available. If you are interested in publishing the book in any language, or seek Intercultural Negotiation Training, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting, please feel free to contact Dr. Daniele Trevisani.

Beliefs are something that a person possesses and feels, more than material goods. 

Let’s imagine asking a person “what do you think of natural yoghurt”? without really knowing anything about that person, never having met him/her before. 

You might answer “good”, but in reality, what the concept “natural yoghurt” evokes is something far more complex. And are we satisfied with that answer or do we want to analyse it deeply? If we are market researchers, we might be very interested in understanding which “worlds” are hidden behind a word; but it must happen the same even if we are coaches, counsellors or researchers. 

In everyday life, in many cases answering “good” might be enough. I know for example that I can put it in the shopping cart if we have to go on a trip together. But I don’t really know why. 

In this scheme – a true mind map that shows what is evoked in a person’s mind when he/she thinks of “natural yoghurt” – we can observe the great complexity behind it. 

How much of this complexity will we be able to grasp? It depends on our listening skills. This example, mind you, serves as a metaphor. It is necessary to understand that behind words there are “semantic worlds”, “worlds of meanings”. Yoghurt is just an excuse to understand how the mechanism works. 

The mental maps that hide behind words are what interests us, our research. From infinite shades, up to entire universes of meaning that hide in the folds of words. 

And are we really interested in grasping them? It depends. Sometimes it may not interest us, sometimes, especially in companies, it may become what makes the difference between understanding a customer and selling, and not understanding him/her and not selling. The difference between failure and success. 

In the example shown below – resulted from a Danish research carried out among a sample of consumers – we highlight the semantic network that is associated with a specific product, the whole milk yoghurt.  

This is literally “what is on that person’s mind”, his/her “semantic network”. And this is the concept that interests us, beyond yogurt. 

A belief is an idea about “how things work” that is accepted as being true or real. 

The semantic networks linked to the “traditional non-skimmed product” are far from a simple food evaluation. In fact, that product can evoke the “memory of the old days”, a sense of trust that comes from the possibility of having more energy to work hard, a sense of happiness and internal harmony – even though a dissonance between fat content and health can be noted. 

If we compare the previous map with that of a much more “problematic” product (e.g., a genetically modified yoghurt) we can understand how perceptual maps allow us to bring out product perceptions and semantic barriers. 



The genetically modified product is linked to fears, mistrust, a sense of immorality. “Organic”, psychological evaluative components – such as the dissonance between biological non-naturality and internal harmony -, social and cultural evaluations and the responsibilities for the well-being of humanity come to light: what is my contribution to this purchase? what values do I support? 

This choice cannot be related only to the product as “food”, but it takes on a connotation full of cultural, ethical and social values (what do I do while buying? Who do I finance? What are my values and theirs?). Our evaluation process does not depend on the economic value, but it is highly correlated with the symbolic value assumed by the purchase deed. A central topic related to beliefs listening is the awareness of the “active” semantic networks inside the client. Listening to beliefs is also essential to understand what motivates people. Both ordinary people and great champions formulate beliefs, which firstly become paradigms of truth, and after a time, their own reality. 

© Article translated from the book “Ascolto attivo ed empatia. I segreti di una comunicazione efficace“. copyright Dr. Daniele Trevisani Intercultural Negotiation Training and Coaching, published with the author’s permission. The Book’s rights are on sale and are available. If you are interested in publishing the book in any language, or seek Intercultural Negotiation Training, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting, please feel free to contact Dr. Daniele Trevisani.

Empathy and Active Listening

The value of silence 

© Article translated from the book “Ascolto attivo ed empatia. I segreti di una comunicazione efficace“. copyright Dr. Daniele Trevisani Intercultural Negotiation Training and Coaching, published with the author’s permission. The Book’s rights are on sale and are available. If you are interested in publishing the book in any language, or seek Intercultural Negotiation Training, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting, please feel free to contact Dr. Daniele Trevisani.

Silence, in listening, has its own meanings too. 

Here is an analysis taken from a video by Eckhart Tolle, to understand the deeep meanings that silence8 can have. 


Eckhart Tolle 

What lies between words is more important than words. It is not nothingness: it is an energy field. The very fact that you can notice the moments of silence between words means that you are bringing your mental presence to those moments, and that they are significant. 


In the moment of pause between sentences, you can allow yourself not to think, and if the gap becomes too long, you will notice that you can think, or you may not even think. This coming and going of thoughts is the most important thing to notice in the whole cycle of a person’s life. The sensations of thinking, of being able to think without losing self-awareness, are rare and noble moments. 


From the perspective of an ordinary mind, the silence between words seems almost nothing, nothing at all, something not even comprehensible. However, it is the fundamental moment of being, of the most important form of being, that which is in the background, the non-form that makes up most of ourselves. 


The field of awareness encompasses both words and, above all, silence, its meanings, and what emerges during silence, especially what arises from silence: sensory perception, stillness, grounding. 


All that matters here is to bring presence to the moments of silence, of apparent emptiness, that makes the words themselves possible. There is a special ability, the ability to stay alert outside the illusion of thought, outside the illusion that leads us to identify with the continuous flow of thoughts. 


Maintaining awareness even in moments of silence means gaining self-awareness, the knowledge of existing even without the need for tangible ‘things’, the knowledge of being, no matter what. 


Listening to and appreciating silence does not increase knowledge, but it does increase awareness. 


Furthermore, active listening knows how to appreciate pauses, silences, how to attribute meaning to them, how to value them, without treating them as ‘lost moments’ or wasted time. They become sacred moments, behind which the deepest meanings are hidden. 

In my coaching and counselling sessions I often invite clients to pause for a moment of silence before giving an answer to my question. And very often, this generates completely different, and deeper, responses than the immediate answer.  

Very often, precious nuggets are hidden behind a silence, and sometimes silence is the ingredient that brings them out. 

© Article translated from the book “Ascolto attivo ed empatia. I segreti di una comunicazione efficace“. copyright Dr. Daniele Trevisani Intercultural Negotiation Training and Coaching, published with the author’s permission. The Book’s rights are on sale and are available. If you are interested in publishing the book in any language, or seek Intercultural Negotiation Training, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting, please feel free to contact Dr. Daniele Trevisani.

Empathy and Active Listening

Active listening mechanisms to make sure that understanding is correct 

© Article translated from the book “Ascolto attivo ed empatia. I segreti di una comunicazione efficace“. copyright Dr. Daniele Trevisani Intercultural Negotiation Training and Coaching, published with the author’s permission. The Book’s rights are on sale and are available. If you are interested in publishing the book in any language, or seek Intercultural Negotiation Training, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting, please feel free to contact Dr. Daniele Trevisani.

When listening, always assume that you will not understand everything perfectly

In this way, you will already know that the techniques of enhanced understanding that we are going to explain will be useful to you. 

Whatever we listen to, where there is a need for clarification, we can also ask for confirmation of what we have perceived, in order to be able to adjust it. In fact, we only have the possibility of making hypotheses about what we perceive, hypotheses that it is good to verify at least on the key elements, resorting to specific mechanisms: 

  1. Reformulation:I reformulate what I understood and let the interlocutor correct me on what diverges.
  2. Synthesis and recapitulation: Isummarisewhat I understood and ask if it is correct. 
  3. Reverberation or Echo: a broader reformulation taking in whole categories, among them: 
  4. i.Reverberation of data: make the sum of all the data heard, 
  5. Emotional reverberation: adding up all the emotions felt, and what they are associated  with,  

iii. Belief Map Reverberation or Belief System: add up all the perceived beliefs, which gives back the person’s “way of seeing things”.  

Eg: Here in this project we have the following actors: you, your father, the trainer, the course, the CEO, the CFO, the managers. You feel for each one that XYZ. To me, your thought seems to be XYX. Did I understand correctly? 

Among the data that we “hear”, there are also non-verbal expressions of self, clothing, a tattoo, haircut, type of shoes, and many other elements. Faced with these elements, the ‘categorisation’, the ‘stereotype’ and the summary and premature judgement may be triggered. I see a person with a floral shirt, shoes without laces, tattoos, I label him as an “alternative leftist” only to discover that he is a Management Consultant instead of the owner of a cannabis shop.  


“Happiness is an open mind. 

Be careful of your stereotypes and prejudices, they may trap you and make you miss out on what life has to offer.” 

Med Yones 


In listening, we need to give ourselves time to gather information, compare it with each other, and understand the bigger picture which is only buildable after listening to different aspects of the person, verbal, non-verbal, and unspoken, not just the “packaging of the person”. Listening to beliefs, listening to data, physical observation, observation of emotional states, when they converge, can give us a much broader picture of listening and perception. This is much more technical listening than empathic listening. Empathy consists of placing oneself in the other person’s state of mind to understand him or her. This multilevel listening, on the other hand, is a true mapping and dissection of the communication flow, where the validity and implications of each of the emerging elements are verified. The result can also be collected in a real database. 

© Article translated from the book “Ascolto attivo ed empatia. I segreti di una comunicazione efficace“. copyright Dr. Daniele Trevisani Intercultural Negotiation Training and Coaching, published with the author’s permission. The Book’s rights are on sale and are available. If you are interested in publishing the book in any language, or seek Intercultural Negotiation Training, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting, please feel free to contact Dr. Daniele Trevisani.

Empathy and Active Listening

A three-level Listening Model

© Article translated from the book “Ascolto attivo ed empatia. I segreti di una comunicazione efficace“. copyright Dr. Daniele Trevisani Intercultural Negotiation Training and Coaching, published with the author’s permission. The Book’s rights are on sale and are available. If you are interested in publishing the book in any language, or seek Intercultural Negotiation Training, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting, please feel free to contact Dr. Daniele Trevisani.

Listening to Data, Listening to Emotions, Listening to Beliefs

Listening to people we don’t really like is one of the professional challenges we face they have to learn in many professions, such as lawyer, doctor, trainer, psychologist, but also manager and leader. It is neither mandatory nor possible to always have the ideal people in front of us. Learn to also listening to people who do not please us is something that must be learned, even if we want to limit the time and space of this contact.  

Empathy, or the art and science of understanding the moods of others, is not something that is due. Sympathy, or the liking of others, is not something due. Instead, we may experience the “need” to interact and listen to people who do not please us, and in this the advanced active listening mechanisms become a professional resource fundamental, and a life resource. Empathy, in psychology, includes identification with moods of another person, i.e. the ability to understand their thoughts and, above all, their emotions. It differs from sympathy for intention in wanting to understand the feelings experienced from another individual, not through a rational explanation, but through a sharing affective. In psychotherapy, the term refers to the therapist’s ability to think and feel himself in the inner life of the patient, to understand him in a deeper way 1. In a different way from what has already been explained, we can distinguish different levels of listening:  

  1. The non-listening, the unwillingness to listen, due to a precise decision (“I don’t want that to listen to him “) or the inability for reasons of our tiredness (” I was sotiredthatI could not hear “).  
  2. Listening in conditions of mutual appreciation, or sympathetic listening. 
  3. A listening aimed at understanding the person in depth, and above all the emotional states of her, o empathic listening. 
  4. Listening apathetic, passive, or even distorted, in cases where there is no listening but the person to listen to is unwelcome to the skin or for ideological and cultural reasons. 

Those who travel without meeting the other do not travel, they move.  

(Alexandra David-Néel)  

Human communication is an existential state, where people take action to try to step out of one’s sphere of limited energies and experiences and connect with other entities human.  

There are as many worlds as there are living people, for which to relate and practice listening it requires a great deal of humility and commitment. The positive message is that science, and a scientific approach, can help us a great deal in understanding the reasons for communication failures and the ingredients for increase the likelihood of communication successes. We are in a world where it is possible to create exceptional, epochal projects, and if we can do it converge our best energies, every advance in the future of humanity and the planet will be possible.  

Our “spheres”, who we are, how we think, how we are made, what and how we live, are living, plastic elements. Listening is very similar to “going to see” what is inside a sphere of others, and how  

this evolves. Listening can also do you good. There is a contagious aspect of affective conditions. Self we learn to listen with greater emotional closeness, we will probably become people best. And every better person infects the others around him, positively. The same happens in the negative when we meet people with weak and sick energies. Meet these too people, it’s a professional challenge.  

As Wallon 2 points out, “Kohler has noticed that a chimpanzee’s joyous excitement does it spread with the same gestures to all the other chimpanzees. The fear of a single ram changes in panic for the whole flock. The cry of a bird is reflected in a rising wave in the aviary”.  

We are in a human aviary, in a human herd of billions of elements housed on the surface of a small blue ball called Earth, scattered in space. For this reason, when we make an intervention aimed at improving listening in a single person, up to a company group or manager, we know that we are bringing humanity, competence and happiness to the system to the entire company and even to those who interact with it, from suppliers to customers. And having happy customers, or happy families, today, is a very serious desire and goal.  

There are many things in life that catch the eye, but only a few catch yours heart: follow those.  

(Winston Churchill)  

Listening can be examined with different zoom levels.  

As with a zoom we can first notice a forest, then zoom in on a single plant and notice the large number of leaves, then focus on a single leaf and notice the veins there flow, insects walking on it, and so on. The same is true in listening. We can examine it as a general phenomenon, see it from above, or enter with different degrees of detail. The degree of detail depends on how many variables we want to use to “examine” the listening and the communicative flow. Listening to multiple tracks requires commitment, requires listening quality, but we must be convinced that this commitment to listening will be rewarded by a quality of absolutely greater understanding.  

Quality is like a wave. That quality work that you thought no one would notice he is noticed, and whoever sees him feels a little better: he will probably transfer in the others this feeling of his and in this way the Quality will continue to spread.  

(Robert M. Pirsig)  

In the next step we will see a fairly simple model, with three main variables, listening to data, listening to emotions, listening to beliefs.  

© Article translated from the book “Ascolto attivo ed empatia. I segreti di una comunicazione efficace“. copyright Dr. Daniele Trevisani Intercultural Negotiation Training and Coaching, published with the author’s permission. The Book’s rights are on sale and are available. If you are interested in publishing the book in any language, or seek Intercultural Negotiation Training, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting, please feel free to contact Dr. Daniele Trevisani.

Empathy and Active Listening News

Meeting between worlds and personal ‘spheres 

© Article translated from the book “Ascolto attivo ed empatia. I segreti di una comunicazione efficace“. copyright Dr. Daniele Trevisani Intercultural Negotiation Training and Coaching, published with the author’s permission. The Book’s rights are on sale and are available. If you are interested in publishing the book in any language, or seek Intercultural Negotiation Training, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting, please feel free to contact Dr. Daniele Trevisani.

Really important encounters are planned by the souls long before the bodies see each other. 

(Paulo Coelho) 

Cultural and professional backgrounds, combined with our personal history, our state of mind, our values, make us unique “systems”. 

Everyone is unique, a ‘sphere’ of meanings, energies, dreams, ambitions, tangible cells, and intangible thoughts. 

Listening means getting closer to that sphere. Deep listening means entering that sphere. 

The more you activate empathy, the more you enter the “core” of the person. 

Each person can be likened metaphorically to an energy field, a field of light, which at some time meets other energy fields, other fields of light, finding or not finding possibilities for exchange, osmosis, transmission of signals, or remaining distant, impermeable. 


“Eventually soulmates meet, for they have the same hiding place.” 

(Robert Brault) 


If I assume that we will magically understand each other, I will not be doing quality listening. Listening means being ready to approach worlds we do not know, and not just letting words in through our ears. 

We find ourselves in a world in which everyone is within their own ‘sphere’ – a set of thoughts, signals, words, values, – together referred to in the HPM method as the ‘Semiosphere’. Each of us lives in a ‘world’, in a sphere of words, concepts, ideologies and beliefs about the world and ourselves. Communication poses the challenge of passing messages between people from different backgrounds. Listening must always consider the possibility that the other person has a different culture from ours, even if it is only slightly different, which would imply the need to listen without preconceptions. Even the difference between a humanistic and a technical-engineering education can create a degree of incommunicability. Not understanding each other is more frequent than we think. 


Every day we go around in a crowd, we run here and there, we almost touch each other but, there is truly little contact. All those missed encounters. All those missed opportunities. It is disturbing when you think about it. Maybe it is better not to think about it at all. 

(Jonathan Coe) 


Every professional or family background offers you a world of words that you use daily, until those words become your world. This world becomes your daily sphere, your sphere of words, your sphere of relationships, your sphere of high or low, strong, or weak energies. 

At some moment, these spheres have occasion for contact, but the different backgrounds make understanding not automatic or obvious. 

When this moment of contact occurs, the two ‘spheres’ can repel each other ‘by the skin’, like two balls of equal magnetic charge repel each other.  

Attraction or repulsion occurs when archaic elements of the brain (archipallium) give us signals of displeasure or pleasantness, towards a face or smells that offer us signals of danger, or with signals that also come from body language, posture, smiles and facial expressions. If the signals are negative, they alert our alarm systems, they are certainly not conducive to listening, but if we know that they are being activated, we can go beyond those signals, listen, and perceive with greater awareness what is happening inside us. 

Listening to a person who disturbs us is something we avoid as much as possible and reduce to the bare minimum, and we notice this even between people who love each other but have had a fight. There is no less talking, there is less listening. 

Listening therefore means much more than hearing words, but observing movement, the body, gestures, facial expressions, objects, moods. 

Miraculously (but it is not a miracle, but the effect of well analysable human mechanisms) the opposite can also happen, a magnetic-like attraction, a human contact where we can find an understanding with someone, a way to share something between our spheres of meaning. And almost always, in this case, listening will become an extremely pleasant process. 


I am ready to meet my Maker. Whether my Maker is prepared for the ordeal of meeting me is another matter. 

(Winston Churchill)

© Article translated from the book “Ascolto attivo ed empatia. I segreti di una comunicazione efficace“. copyright Dr. Daniele Trevisani Intercultural Negotiation Training and Coaching, published with the author’s permission. The Book’s rights are on sale and are available. If you are interested in publishing the book in any language, or seek Intercultural Negotiation Training, Coaching, Mentoring and Consulting, please feel free to contact Dr. Daniele Trevisani.