Why are we not more selfish? What the study of brain and behavior can tell us
SourceFrontiers for Young Minds, 5, (2017), article 47
Article / Letter to editor
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Donders Centre for Cognitive Neuroimaging
PI Group Decision Neuroscience
SW OZ BSI SCP
Frontiers for Young Minds
Subject140 000 Decision neuroscience; Behaviour Change and Well-being; Developmental Psychopathology
People often show a tendency toward cooperation, even though it often is a costly decision. Why this occurs is a question that has long been a topic of fascination for researchers from many different fields. Societies often do better when their citizens cooperate with each other, and so an answer to this question not only helps us to understand ourselves, but also creates opportunities for improving our society. In this article, we discuss behavioral and brain imaging research that suggests there may be several different motivations as to why we tend to cooperate instead of behaving selfishly. A tiny hint: wanting to feel good, avoid punishment, and live up to others’ expectations have a lot to do with it!
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