What We Know about Emotional Intelligence

Emotional Intelligence

How It Affects Learning, Work, Relationships, and Our Mental Health
Richard D. Roberts

Emotional intelligence (or EI) — the ability to perceive, regulate, and communicate emotions, and to understand emotions in ourselves and others — has been the subject of best-selling books, magazine cover stories, and countless media mentions.

It has been touted as a solution for problems ranging from relationship issues to the inadequacies of local schools. But the media hype has far outpaced the scientific research on emotional intelligence. In ‘What We Know about Emotional Intelligence’, three experts who are actively involved in research into EI offer a state-of-the-art account of EI in theory and practice. They tell us what we know about EI based, not on anecdotes or wishful thinking, but on scientific evidence.

EI promises a new means for achieving success and personal happiness. Coaches and consultants offer EI training and administer EQ tests — despite the lack of any agreement on how to measure EI, the usefulness of testing for EI, and even how to define EI. ‘What We Know about Emotional Intelligence’ looks at current knowledge about EI with the goal of translating it into practical recommendations in work, school, social, and psychological contexts. The authors discuss what is (and what isn’t) EI, why the concept has such appeal today, how EI develops, and the usefulness of EI in the real world — in school curricula, the workplace, and treating psychological dysfunction.