I just appeared in a BBC debate about whether future genocide is inevitable. I said that it wasn't, especially if we utilize knowledge about human nature. Here's why I'm so optimistic about our evolved psychology and potential for peace.
There have been many recent media stories—with titles like "Science Says: Hot Guys Are A-Holes"—about a new study on attractiveness and behavior. I was lead author on this study, and I'll clarify here what our study really showed.
In the human evolutionary past, certain resources (such as sugar, fat, and multiple mates) would have been great for survival and reproduction but difficult to acquire. How has the past elusiveness of these resources shaped human appetites for them?
Did the human leader-follower relationship evolve as a kind of mutually-beneficial exchange interaction? And if so, why are we so often plagued by leaders who focus more on exploiting their followers than on benefiting them? A new paper provides answers.
'New Atheist' Sam Harris recently offered $20,000 to anybody who could convince him, in a 1,000-word essay, to change his mind about how morality can be based on scientific reasoning. Here's the essay I submitted.
Jonathan Haidt, one of the world's best-known psychologists and public intellectuals, wants to know how evolution enables human morality. I interviewed him to find out more about his approach to evolutionary moral psychology.
Like guppies and many other species, humans herd in order to obtain resources and evade threats. But while herding seems like a safe and prudent strategy to the individuals doing it, it can create massive risks for societies that depend on market economies.
When politicians speak of punishing freeloaders, they portray it as a matter of fairness. But their moralizing is too often undermined by a status-based selectivity that isn’t fair at all: low-status people don't freeload more than high-status people, but they're more likely to get punished for it. Why does this bias exist?