Al Erdynast, DBA

Distinguished Professor
BA in Liberal Studies
(310) 578-1080 ext. 224

Doctor of Business Administration in Organizational Behavior, Harvard University
MBA in Management Theory, UCLA
BS in Engineering, UCLA

Al Erdynast, DBA, recently developed a reliable scoring system for the study of developmental levels of conceptions of compassion in a study conducted with a former Secretary to The Dalai Lama. Al also previously designed a research project for UCLA to study whether Tibetan refugee adolescent orphans were preserving traditional Tibetan values in exile, and conducted a pilot study for the project in Dharamsala, India.

Al has trained and mentored several generations of students in doctoral level research and is currently training new researchers during in the study of generosity with one’s talent. Generosity stems from three sets of motivations. Some motivations for generosity arise from individuals’ conceptions of worthwhile aims, or the “good.” Another set of motivations is our natural social duties and obligations to help those in need, or the “right.” A third set of motivations, “magnanimity,” generosity that goes well beyond any requirements and involves excessive risk or loss to oneself. Magnanimity arises from a love of humankind. This love connotes a heightened sensitivity to the feelings and wants of others as well as humility and unconcern with self, manifests as advancements the common good in ways that go well beyond societal duties and obligations. This study examines developmental variations of the three distinct types of generosity by exploring the use of respondents’ talents to benefit others.

Al’s teaching interests include Moral Psychology in the Dramatic Film, Human Rights and Children, Philosophical & Psychological Issues in Adult Development, Psychology of Moral & Spiritual Development, Ethical Issues in Business, Picasso: Life and Works, Mark Twain, Research on Generosity, Magnanimity, and Compassion.

Outstanding Educator Award, 2009, State of California Assembly

  • Developmental conceptions of generosity based on worthwhile aims, the duty of mutual aid, and magnanimity that involves excessive risk or loss to oneself
  • Developmental conceptions of compassion, compassionate love and forgiveness

Erdynast, A. and Rapgay, L. Developmental Levels of Conceptions of Compassion in the Ethical Decision-Making of Western Buddhist Practitioners, Journal of Adult Development, Springer Publications, 2008

  • Moral Psychology in the Dramatic Film (PSY 370)
  • Human Rights and Children (PSY 316)
  • Philosophical & Psychological Issues in Adult Development (PSY 404)
  • Psychology of Moral & Spiritual Development (PSY 411)
  • Ethical Issues in Business (BUS 510)
  • Picasso: Life and Works (ART 338)
  • Mark Twain: Personal Psychology and Moral Philosophy (PSY 471)