WOW | Coffee Break

How do you define intelligence in today’s context?

Prativa Pandey
CEO and Founder, Catalyst Technology Pvt. Ltd.
Visiting Research Faculty, Research Center for Applied Science and Technology, Tribhuvan University

Intelligence is an ability through which we gather information to understand our surrounding, and translate that understanding to express ourselves. Today, when we are bombarded by information, intelligence can enable us to connect the dots between seemingly unrelated information gathered over time and space. It cannot be fully measured by simply taking an IQ (intelligence quotient) or EQ (emotional quotient) test and is perhaps unique for each individual like fingerprints. Not just genetic but also social and emotional conditioning influence the way we perceive and employ intelligence. Just as an instance, a huge misconception exists that men are more intelligent than women in their analytical, scientific, and mathematical abilities. Although debunked many times, these misconceptions create pressures for women to repeatedly prove their intelligence at home, school, and work. Before making such gender-specific generalisations, we have to realise that the domain of intelligence is vast. It encompasses not just mental aptitude, but also emotional attitude. Intelligence doesn’t have to be seen as being fixed. It is important to ask yourself this question – “Who would you think is intelligent if society never told you who is intelligent?”