Dr Beau Lotto is a globally renowned neuroscientist as well as Founder and CEO of Lab of Misfits Studio, the world’s first neuro-design studio. The lab creates unique real-world ‘experiential-experiments’ that places the public at the centre of the process of discovery. By spanning social and personal boundaries between people, brands and institutions, the Lab’s aim is to create, expand and apply their insights into what it is to be a perceiving human.
Public engagement, in the broadest sense, is at the core of what Beau does. By enabling people to experience what it is to be a scientist, Lotto's aim is to encourage them to see science not as an academic investigation but as a way of being that is relevant to every aspect of their lives.
Lotto has always looked outside the lab environment in order to collaborate with those who share his interest in exploring different ways of seeing – and doing – things, be they scientists, artists, musicians, educationalists, designers or entire businesses. As a result his domain is as much a creative studio as a lab, whose output ranges from art installations and visual illusions to workshops designed for corporate leaders.
Lotto's ambitious ideas about the relevance of science to ordinary people have taken him to places where few other scientists have ventured – including into exhibition space inside the world's best-known Science Museum, in London, where Lottolab was resident from 2010–12. While at the museum, Lottolab pushed public engagement in science to new levels by involving the public directly in experiments. Lotto's education programme led to the publication of the first-ever, peer-reviewed scientific paper written by schoolchildren.
Lottolab is now collaborating with branding consultantancy, Purpose Ltd, to unlock the potential impact of Lotto's work on corporate innovation and creativity. They are currently developing several experiential products, including an interactive 'digital tree' in a prime London location; an augmented reality social network (in development in Silicon Valley); and, in collaboration with the Peter Baumann Foundation in San Francisco, a pop-up laboratory cum night club/cabaret.
In 2017, Lotto published his first major book, Deviate: The Science of Seeing Differently. He draws on over two decades of pioneering research to explain that our brain hasn't evolved to see the world accurately.