Biography

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Eduardo delivers his first conference at Oxford University

How it all started

Eduardo Jáuregui was born in Oxford on 26 May 1971, during the second season of Monty Python’s Flying Circus.

He spent his childhood and youth between Oxford, Madrid and Los Ángeles, with a wonderful family very fond of playing, laughing and shouting.

As he was equally clumsy with European and American football, he decided at an early age to concentrate on more creative endeavours such as writing stories, doodling, and directing his first short films in VHS –mainly spoofs of TV shows such as Miami Vice.

In 1993 he graduated in Social Psychology (London School of Economics), after completing his first research project on the topic of laughter. He later received a Masters Degree in Social Anthropology (Oxford University) and a Doctorate in Social and Political Sciences (European University Institute in Florence) with a  much longer and phenomenally more boring thesis on humour.

Against all odds, he makes a career out of humour

After his thesis, as he saw no way of applying his research on humour in the “real world”, he worked in Madrid and London for various hi-tech companies such as Meta4, Scient and Netjuice Network, both in creative endeavours (conceptual design of large corporate and e-commerce websites) and in strategic human resources (corporate culture, internal communication, talent management).

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Celebración of “Fun at Work Day” at the Madrid “Bolsa” (Stock Exchange)

During this period, Eduardo was pleasantly surprised to discover that fun and playfulness did in fact have a place in the “real world”. It was here that he was able to design and implement his first projects in applied fun: theming office spaces, adding humorous touches to internal memos, organizing fun events, choosing office toys… At Scient he even managed to be selected for the role of Chief Morale Officer.

In 2003 he met the education expert Jesús Damián Fernández, and this was the spark that led to the creation of Serious Fun a training consultancy specialized in the application of humour, play and positive emotions in the workplace. At first no one seemed to understand their services, but finally they managed to convince clients as serious as IKEA, General Motors, Oracle, TOUS and Olympus, as well as educational institutions, companies in the public sector and NGO’s. In 2008 they began to promote Fun at Work Day in Spain, quickly turning the event into a media sensation, inspiring many companies to celebrate it every year, and thus adding to the calendar a holiday which is now almost as famous as Christmas and Halloween.

He also speaks and facilitates regularly for Hyper Island, according to Fastcompany one of the top 10 schools for the startup economy, and for the innovative Spanish startup school Teamlabs, of which he is a partner.

In addition to his consulting work, Eduardo teaches Positive Psychology, among other subjects, at the Psychology Department of Saint Louis University, Madrid Campus, and guest teaches in numerous masters programmes.

He has become one of the most requested speakers in Spain and abroad to deliver talks about topics such as the sense of humour, positive emotions and positive psychology, in venues including the Royal Institution of Great Britain, TED talks, and the Winchester Festival of Art and Mind.

What he’s up to now

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Eduardo discussing the seriousness of humour with Spanish late-show host Andreu Buenafuente

Lately, Eduardo is mainly focused on his creative projects (at age 5 we would call it “playing”) in fields such as fiction writing, theatre, film and advertising. These have been recognized with awards such as the Premio Goya (Spanish Academy Award), and three prizes (including Best Campaign) in the European Festival of Humour and Advertising.

He has published six books for adults –El Sentido del Humor, Amor y Humor, Conversaciones con mi Gata, Yoga a la Siciliana, Alta Diversión and Juicio a los Humanos, (translated into English as Humans on Trial)– as well as six books for children, including The Most Wonderful Story Ever Written, and over 80 articles in academic publications and in the press. Rights to his books have been sold to over 15 countries, including Germany, Italy, France, Russia, China and Korea.

He has over 200 appearances in the media, including BBC interviews, the newscasts of  TVE-1, TVE-2, Antena3, Tele5 and La Sexta, the pages of El País, El Mundo and ABC, the back-page interview of La Vanguardia, and numerous prime-time radio and TV programmes.

Future

He’d like to be an astronaut when he grows up.

Note:
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