Article by Smaranda Pop, Vice Romania
Ana Iorga is a Romanian neuromarketing pioneer who specializes in market research that uses EEG sensors, biometric measurements, and implicit-association tests. While attending an advertising conference in Amsterdam last month, Iorga staged an impromptu experiment to measure the effect that weed has on the brain using the EEG helmet she normally carries around in her bag.
“I noticed how quite a few of the attendees grabbed a joint between breaks, and I kept wondering what goes on in their brains during those moments,” she told me. “Because I don’t posses any mind-reading techniques, I thought about comparing their brain activity before and after smoking.”
Two of her colleagues were kind enough to sacrifice themselves at the altar of science: One evening, after dinner, one of them lit a spliff and the other got to munching on an adulterated cookie.
“Before consuming the products, we went to the hotel bar and I recorded their brain activity,” Iorga said. “After 15 minutes, I repeated the measures. I was convinced that I’d see a decrease in brain activity, because they said they felt slower, more absent, and more relaxed. I was very surprised by the result.”