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The Role of Ontogeny in the Evolution of Human Cooperation

age. Many of the most distinctive cognitive and social differences between humans and their nearest primate relatives derive from humans' unique skills and motivations for Michael Tomasello Human ... , provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. Michael Tomasello is co-director of the Max

Giving Is Nicer than Taking: Preschoolers Reciprocate Based on the Social Intentions of the Distributor

Recent research has found that even preschoolers give more resources to others who have previously given resources to them, but the psychological bases of this reciprocity are unknown. In our study, a puppet distributed resources between herself and a child by taking some from a pile in front of the child or else by giving some from a pile in front of herself. Although the ...

What Is a Group? Young Children’s Perceptions of Different Types of Groups and Group Entitativity

To date, developmental research on groups has focused mainly on in-group biases and intergroup relations. However, little is known about children’s general understanding of social groups and their perceptions of different forms of group. In this study, 5- to 6-year-old children were asked to evaluate prototypes of four key types of groups: an intimacy group (friends), a task group ...

Differing views: Can chimpanzees do Level 2 perspective-taking?

Although chimpanzees understand what others may see, it is unclear whether they understand how others see things (Level 2 perspective-taking). We investigated whether chimpanzees can predict the behavior of a conspecific which is holding a mistaken perspective that differs from their own. The subject competed with a conspecific over two food sticks. While the subject could see that ...

Production and Comprehension of Gestures between Orang-Utans (Pongo pygmaeus) in a Referential Communication Game

Orang-utans played a communication game in two studies testing their ability to produce and comprehend requestive pointing. While the ‘communicator’ could see but not obtain hidden food, the ‘donor’ could release the food to the communicator, but could not see its location for herself. They could coordinate successfully if the communicator pointed to the food, and if the donor ...

Non-Egalitarian Allocations among Preschool Peers in a Face-to-Face Bargaining Task

In face-to-face bargaining tasks human adults almost always agree on an equal split of resources. This is due to mutually recognized fairness and equality norms. Early developmental studies on sharing and equality norms found that egalitarian allocations of resources are not common before children are 5 or 6 years old. However, recent studies have shown that in some face-to face ...

Generalize or Personalize - Do Dogs Transfer an Acquired Rule to Novel Situations and Persons?

Recent studies have raised the question of whether dogs, like human infants, comprehend an established rule as generalizable, normative knowledge or rather as episodic information, existing only in the immediate situation. In the current study we tested whether dogs disobeyed a prohibition to take a treat (i) in the presence of the communicator of the ban, (ii) after a temporary ...

Can We Dissociate Contingency Learning from Social Learning in Word Acquisition by 24-Month-Olds?

We compared 24-month-old children’s learning when their exposure to words came either in an interactive (coupled) context or in a nonsocial (decoupled) context. We measured the children’s learning with two different methods: one in which they were asked to point to the referent for the experimenter, and the other a preferential looking task in which they were encouraged to look to ...

Do Domestic Dogs Learn Words Based on Humans’ Referential Behaviour?

Some domestic dogs learn to comprehend human words, although the nature and basis of this learning is unknown. In the studies presented here we investigated whether dogs learn words through an understanding of referential actions by humans rather than simple association. In three studies, each modelled on a study conducted with human infants, we confronted four word-experienced ...

Chimpanzees' (Pan troglodytes) strategic helping in a collaborative task

Alicia P. Melis Michael Tomasello 0 Department of Developmental and Comparative Psychology, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology , Leipzig, Germany 1 Behavioural Science Group, Warwick

Three-Year-Olds’ Understanding of the Consequences of Joint Commitments

Here we investigate the extent of children’s understanding of the joint commitments inherent in joint activities. Three-year-old children either made a joint commitment to assemble a puzzle with a puppet partner, or else the child and puppet each assembled their own puzzle. Afterwards, children who had made the joint commitment were more likely to stop and wait for their partner on ...

Does Sympathy Motivate Prosocial Behaviour in Great Apes?

Prosocial behaviours such as helping, comforting, or sharing are central to human social life. Because they emerge early in ontogeny, it has been proposed that humans are prosocial by nature and that from early on empathy and sympathy motivate such behaviours. The emerging question is whether humans share these abilities to feel with and for someone with our closest relatives, the ...

Five-Year Olds, but Not Chimpanzees, Attempt to Manage Their Reputations

Virtually all theories of the evolution of cooperation require that cooperators find ways to interact with one another selectively, to the exclusion of cheaters. This means that individuals must make reputational judgments about others as cooperators, based on either direct or indirect evidence. Humans, and possibly other species, add another component to the process: they know ...

Untrained Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes schweinfurthii) Fail to Imitate Novel Actions

Background Social learning research in apes has focused on social learning in the technical (problem solving) domain - an approach that confounds action and physical information. Successful subjects in such studies may have been able to perform target actions not as a result of imitation learning but because they had learnt some technical aspect, for example, copying the movements ...

How two word-trained dogs integrate pointing and naming

Two word-trained dogs were presented with acts of reference in which a human pointed, named objects, or simultaneously did both. The question was whether these dogs would assume co-reference of pointing and naming and thus pick the pointed-to object. Results show that the dogs did indeed assume co-reference of pointing and naming in order to determine the reference of a spoken ...

Theft in an ultimatum game: chimpanzees and bonobos are insensitive to unfairness

Ingrid Kaiser Keith Jensen Josep Call Michael Tomasello Receive free email alerts when new articles cite this article - sign up in the box at the top right-hand corner of the article or click here

How chimpanzees solve collective action problems

Anna-Claire Schneider () 0 Alicia P. Melis 0 Michael Tomasello 0 0 Department of Developmental and Comparative Psychology, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology , Deutscher Platz 6

Dogs (Canis familiaris) Evaluate Humans on the Basis of Direct Experiences Only

Michael Tomasello 0 Elsa Addessi, CNR, Italy 0 Department of Developmental and Comparative Psychology, Max-Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology , Leipzig , Germany Reputation formation is a key

Dogs (Canis familiaris), but Not Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes), Understand Imperative Pointing

Chimpanzees routinely follow the gaze of humans to outside targets. However, in most studies using object choice they fail to use communicative gestures (e.g. pointing) to find hidden food. Chimpanzees' failure to do this may be due to several difficulties with this paradigm. They may, for example, misinterpret the gesture as referring to the opaque cup instead of the hidden food. ...

Evidence for Emulation in Chimpanzees in Social Settings Using the Floating Peanut Task

Background It is still unclear which observational learning mechanisms underlie the transmission of difficult problem-solving skills in chimpanzees. In particular, two different mechanisms have been proposed: imitation and emulation. Previous studies have largely failed to control for social factors when these mechanisms were targeted. Methods In an attempt to resolve the existing ...