Minds, behaviours and psyches are increasingly and explicitly problematized within social, economic, health, welfare, education and development policy, in both the global North and global South. While this shift is new, it also builds on a long colonial history of the constitution and governance of the â€˜psyâ€™. This special section considers these developments through critically engaging with them as human technologies whereby certain cognitions, affects and behaviours come to be made knowable, calculable and amenable to technological interventions and quantification. Starting with the concept of human technologies, this special section also seeks to extend it, troubling the prevailing account of technologyâ€™s role as governmentalization by placing this particular power/knowledge nexus in relation to other historical and current forms of power such as gender, race and coloniality. In this introduction to the special section, â€˜Human technologies, affect and the global psy-complexâ€™, we outline the conceptual and empirical contributions the collection of papers seeks to make.