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Cognition. 2008 Jul;108(1):222-31. doi: 10.1016/j.cognition.2007.12.003. Epub 2008 Jan 28.

Foundations of cooperation in young children.

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  • 1Psychology Department, Harvard University, 33 Kirkland Street, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA. krolson@gmail.com

Abstract

Observations and experiments show that human adults preferentially share resources with close relations, with people who have shared with them (reciprocity), and with people who have shared with others (indirect reciprocity). These tendencies are consistent with evolutionary theory but could also reflect the shaping effects of experience or instruction in complex, cooperative, and competitive societies. Here, we report evidence for these three tendencies in 3.5-year-old children, despite their limited experience with complex cooperative networks. Three pillars of mature cooperative behavior therefore appear to have roots extending deep into human development.

PMID:
18226808
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2481508
Free PMC Article
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