Coordination strategies of chimpanzees and human children in a Stag Hunt game.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Much of human cooperation takes place in mutualistic contexts in which the main challenge for individuals is how to coordinate decisions. In the current studies, we compared the abilities of chimpanzees and young children to coordinate with a partner in two versions of a Stag Hunt game. When risks were low (the hare was of low value) and information was cheap (the partner's behaviour was readily observable), partners of both species were able to successfully coordinate on the higher value stag more than 90% of the time. By contrast, when the risks were raised and observing the partner was more difficult, the chimpanzees became less successful, whereas the children compensated, and so remained highly successful, by communicating more often and more specifically. This pattern of results is consistent with the hypothesis that humans evolved unique skills of coordination and communication in the context of especially risky coordination problems.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Duguid, S; Wyman, E; Bullinger, AF; Herfurth-Majstorovic, K; Tomasello, M

Published Date

  • December 2014

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 281 / 1796

Start / End Page

  • 20141973 -

PubMed ID

  • 25320165

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC4213656

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1471-2954

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0962-8452

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1098/rspb.2014.1973


  • eng