Organizational Cognition, Heuristics, and Neuroscience

Mercer & Company

Exploration of the mind in the framework of cognitive neuroscience within organizations, when executed correctly, has a potential yield of understanding the human experience and how the human experience relates to the functional ability of a human being to perform their job most effectively.

Mercer & Company’s  organizational neuroscience team is committed to both new and existing theories of organizational phenomena that can benefit from incorporating empirical findings, methodologies, and overarching themes from neuroscience and human cognition.


Organizational Research & Analytics

Mercer & Company

Neuroscience can allow us to finally go inside the brain and investigate these primal causes & mechanisms of human behavior. These themes elucidate particular networks of brain systems and processes responsible for the workplace attitudes and behaviors that have been observed.

Our core interest lies in understanding the brain processes behind observed attitudes and behaviors and their implications for predicting and modifying these behaviors in the workplace. In this way, prior organizational theories are incomplete in the sense that they do not consider the most fundamental level of analysis. Our ultimate aim is to establish an organizational neuroscience perspective that strives to understand and incorporate the cognitive machinery behind our thoughts and actions into organizational theory. Leveraging this knowledge will reduce our level of analysis to the most basic building blocks of behavior. The ultimate promise of this perspective is to connect and unify our theories of organizational behavior

An organizational neuroscience paradigm would bring essential benefits, some of the major areas of focus that we pursue include:

  • Organizational neuroscience would help extend existing internal theories, specifically, hierarchical reductionism promises a new, deeper level of analysis. Neuroscientific investigations will add detail to our accounts of human behavior, while further linking scientific disciplines to organizational outcomes. 
  • Explorations of the brain and behavior tend to emphasize the role of nonconscious processing, while most current theories of organizational behavior focus on conscious choices. Combining these two paradigms would encourage organizations to ask questions that might not otherwise come to mind. 
  • Perspectives from organizational neuroscience can help organizations resolve existing conceptual disagreements. Issues that are difficult to differentiate at one level of analysis may become more distinctive at the level of neural processing. 

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