November 19, 2018 – Non Profit Quarterly –

How can you help someone in crisis feel better? It requires deeply human intelligence and communications skills, and above all, listening. It is also one of a growing number of situations where new ways of listening—supported by artificial intelligence—can help.

Using text messages exchanged through Crisis Text Line, researchers from Stanford University led by Jure Leskovec used natural language processing, a form of artificial intelligence, to identify counseling strategies that were most helpful to people struggling with issues like eating disorders, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts. Their research found, for example, that being adaptable and creative in a conversation with a person in crisis is key, as is shifting the perspective to focus on other people and on the future.

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Listening Seekers, what are your thoughts?

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