The Greater Good website has brought together a wide range of research showing the benefits of empathy:
Here are some specific, science-based activities for cultivating empathy, also from the Greater Good Science Centre (GGSC):
How Empathetic are you?
Take the GGSC’s emotional intelligence quiz to find out!
Be a mate! By talking about "the real stuff" we can let other guys know that we're cool for them to do that too. View Article.