Domestication experiments reveal developmental link between friendliness and cognition


Journal Article

© 2017, Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature. The goal of economics is to understand human preferences. Most research focuses on adult humans and does not take an evolutionary approach. In biology experimental evolution has been able to shift the preferences of animals. As an example, artificial selection for friendly behavior toward humans results in a syndrome of changes that strongly resembles differences between wild and domestic animals. These domestication experiments have revealed precise genetic and neurobiological systems that are altered by the selection and linked through expanded windows of development. Similar evolutionary experiments selecting for a range of social, risk or discounting preferences could push economics toward consilience with biology. Prospects for a unified theory of economic behavior would be drastically improved.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Hare, B

Published Date

  • April 1, 2018

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 20 / 1

Start / End Page

  • 159 - 163

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1573-6989

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1387-6996

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1007/s10818-017-9264-9

Citation Source

  • Scopus