After providing all the funding for The Brain from Top to Bottom for over 10 years, the CIHR Institute of Neurosciences, Mental Health and Addiction informed us that because of budget cuts, they were going to be forced to stop sponsoring us as of March 31st, 2013.

We have approached a number of organizations, all of which have recognized the value of our work. But we have not managed to find the funding we need. We must therefore ask our readers for donations so that we can continue updating and adding new content to The Brain from Top to Bottom web site and blog.

Please, rest assured that we are doing our utmost to continue our mission of providing the general public with the best possible information about the brain and neuroscience in the original spirit of the Internet: the desire to share information free of charge and with no adverstising.

Whether your support is moral, financial, or both, thank you from the bottom of our hearts!

Bruno Dubuc, Patrick Robert, Denis Paquet, and Al Daigen




Monday, 6 May 2013
What Are People’s Deepest Motivations?

Economists have long regarded financial gain as one of the primary motives that drive human beings. But research in the cognitive sciences increasingly shows that while money may induce people to work harder physically, it seems to have no effect at all where mental tasks are concerned.

As author Daniel Pink describes in an illustrated talk to which a link is provided below, studies in various countries have shown that giving people more money does not stimulate creative thought, even when the amounts offered are the equivalent of several weeks’ pay.

So if money does not motivate people to work harder, what does? Simpler, more “human” things, such as a feeling of independence, the love of a challenge, or the pleasure of improving oneself, mastering a subject, or finding personal or social meaning in one’s job.

For this reason, Pink concludes, treating people like human beings and not like Pavlov’s dogs is not only better for the individuals concerned, but also for society as a whole. And since some of the studies that Pink cites were commissioned by the Federal Reserve Bank of the United States, it is hard to dismiss this conclusion as some kind of socialist plot!

The web site of the RSA (Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce) offers a number of other animated talks on various aspects of human behaviour, such as language and brain lateralization. This unique teaching approach is very effective, and we certainly plan to link to more of these animated talks in future posts on this blog.

i_lien RSA Animate – Drive: The surprising truth about what motivates us
i_lien RSA Animate – All Videos

Pleasure and Pain | 3 comments »


3 comments at; “What Are People’s Deepest Motivations?”

  1. [...] said that intuition is a gift, and rationality is its servant. But in another RSA Animate lecture to which we provide a link this week, about the specialization of the two hemispheres of the human [...]

  2. [...] some previous posts in this blog, I have talked about the RSA Animate knowledge-visualization videos and the Brain Science Podcast, and I promised that I would mention other videos in these two [...]

  3. [...] previous posts in this blog, we have drawn your attention to various lectures in the RSA Animate series, in which experts is a variety of fields give online talks while cartoon illustrations are drawn in [...]

Leave a comment


7 − = two