Dr. Julia Shaw

Bestselling Author, Evil
Psychological Scientist, University College London

Dr. Julia Shaw is a psychological scientist (UCL). She is best known for her work in the areas of memory and criminal psychology.


In 2017 Dr. Shaw co-founded the memory science and artificial intelligence start-up Spot. Spot helps employees report workplace harassment and discrimination, and empowers organizations to build a more inclusive and respectful work environment.


In 2016 she published her bestselling debut book “The Memory Illusion”, which has appeared in 20 languages. In 2019 she published her second international bestseller “Evil: The Science Behind Humanity’s Dark Side”.


Besides her research, she is regular keynote speaker on the topics of memory hacking, tackling workplace harassment, and artificial intelligence. Dr Shaw also consults as an expert on legal cases, particularly cases involving historical allegations.

In unrelated news, Julia is fluent in both German and English.


Making Evil: The Science behind humanity’s dark side

Are you evil? Dr. Julia Shaw’s keynote is a smart and highly interesting exploration of why we think and do bad things. Julia Shaw shows us that the same dispositions that make us capable of heinous crimes may also work to our advantage. And, if evil is within all of us, should it be said to exist at all? Julia Shaw uses a compelling mix of science, popular culture and real life examples to break down timely and important issues. How similar is your brain to a psychopath’s? How many people have murder fantasies? Can A.I. be evil? Do your sexual proclivities make you a bad person? Who becomes a terrorist? This is a wide-ranging exploration into a fascinating, darkly compelling subject.

The Future of Memory

Can your memory be hacked? Can you download or upload your memories? How is social media influencing your sense of self and creating your digital identity? Technology has a profound impact on our ability to remember. Never before have we been able to document our lives in such a complete and extraordinary manner. But with new technologies come unprecedented ways to manipulate our memories. Dr Julia Shaw will show you how our memories can be hacked, making us believe we experienced things that never actually happened at all. Let her show you how to safeguard yourself with the help of analogue and digital tools, and introduce you to her groundbreaking research on memory and AI – and her new startup SPOT. Prepare to be astonished and terrified by the future that awaits.

Better than this: How to deal with workplace harassment and discrimination

How should we talk about harassment and discrimination at work? Are we even hearing about incidents when they happen? Can we encourage a culture of disclosure, ideally before incidents get out of hand? Dr Shaw’s research is in line with the preliminary findings of the UK Equality and Human Rights Commission, showing that improved and anonymous reporting is crucial to tackling workplace harassment and discrimination. Let her share her latest scientific research, focusing specifically on scalable solutions to improving the way we report and deal with this timely issue. Sharing knowledge from a decade of her research on best practices in police interviewing, she explains the best ways to reliably extract and preserve emotional memories, and why it is so important for us to talk openly about transgressions. Allow her to educate you on how to best implement reporting pathways and to decrease barriers to reporting, and how to effectively deal with reports, in a practical and evidence-based way.

Julia also has the following keynotes prepared:

  • The Memory Illusion: Why you may not be who you think you are
  • Make yourself unforgettable: Tricks and tips from a memory hacker
  • How false memories threaten our future: The nostalgia effect in politics and society
  • Digital identity: Why we are constantly reinventing ourselves
  • The Future of Remembering: Artificial Intelligence and Memory
  • Upgrade your workplace culture: Dealing with workplace discrimination and harassment
  • Making Evil: The science behind humanity’s dark side
  • Making Evil: The curious science behind cybercrime, moral blindness and false memories
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