Philip Zimbardo holds the title of Professor Emeritus at Stanford University, and previously taught at Columbia University, New York University, and Yale University. In 1954, Zimbardo earned his BA in psychology, sociology, and anthropology from Brooklyn College, and completed his MS and Ph.D. in psychology at Yale University in 1959.
Zimbardo is best known for his infamous 1971 Stanford prison experiment, and what he termed “The Lucifer Effect,” discussed in the book of the same name. The experiment was received with controversy and criticism, both in terms of ethics and scientific rigor. Regardless, Zimbardo’s findings argue, in summary, that imbalances of power between people lead to corruption and abuse. Later, amid the fallout of the 2004 Abu Ghraib Prison torture scandal, Zimbardo published The Lucifer Effect: Understanding How Good People Turn Evil, examining the issue and reflecting what he found in his experiment. The book on the subject was popular among mainstream audiences, and remains a regular point of discussion in both college psychology and ethics courses. Other published works by Zimbardo include The Time Paradox which discusses the psychological science of time.
For his work, Zimbardo has received a variety of honors and awards, including the Gold Medal for Lifetime Achievement in the Science of Psychology from the American Psychological Foundation, and an honorary doctorate degree from SWPS University in Warsaw.
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