Dr Robert Styles
I initially trained in music then, in a later chapter of my life, went on to become an academic doing applied research in the field of Contextual Behavioural Science through the Australian National University. Over the last couple of decades, this stream of activity has had me working with communities, organisations, and governments across the Australian, Pacific, African, Asian, European, and American regions. Presently, I am working with Prosocial World, an organisation that has developed a change method based on behavioural and evolutionary science that enhances cooperation and collaboration for groups of all types and sizes that is potentially effective on a global scale. When engaged, for me, this means co-designing behavioural and evolutionary approaches to realising environmental and socio-cultural resilience and wellbeing for those I am working with.
The approach I take to this work is captured in my two books, The Functional Self-Discrimination Measure and Interview and The Conversation. The Functional Self-Discrimination Measure & Interview provides a method for analysing language that has shown the way people describe their own and others’ behaviour predicts their long-term wellbeing. Applying this understanding has led to the design of healthy social behaviour by successfully identifying and aligning the intrinsically held values of community members. The Conversation translates this research agenda into an easy to read and evocative conversation that strives, with integrity, to answer the question, “What is important now and in the long run (for you and the significant others in your life)?” In this way, applying an empirically validated understanding of the function of language and cognition and how it regulates behaviour to reinforce prosocial and moral conduct in different contexts. The significance of these two books extends from the one-on-one session work of therapists and professional coaches with their clients to the work of leaders and change agents aiming to coordinate broader systemic change. The History of Music, reflects my enduring love of the art.