Category Archives: Social

Building a Social Brain

Because we are a social species, humans have evolved a fundamental need to belong that encourages behaviors reflective of being good group members. From this perspective, the need for interpersonal attachments is a fundamental motive that has evolved for adaptive … Continue reading

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Decision-making in the Adolescent Brain

Adolescence is characterized by making risky decisions. Early lesion and neuroimaging studies in adults pointed to the ventromedial prefrontal cortex and related structures as having a key role in decision-making. More recent studies have fractionated decision-making processes into its various … Continue reading

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Intuitive Prosociality

Prosocial behavior is a central feature of human life and a major focus of research across the natural and social sciences. Most theoretical models of prosociality share a common assumption: Humans are instinctively selfish, and prosocial behavior requires exerting reflective … Continue reading

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The Social Brain: Psychological Underpinnings and Implications for the Structure of Organizations

The social brain hypothesis refers to a quantitative relationship between social group size and neocortex volume in monkeys and apes. This relationship predicts a group size of approximately 150 for humans, which turns out to be the typical size of … Continue reading

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Social: Why Our Brains Are Wired to Connect

Why are we influenced by the behaviour of complete strangers? Why does the brain register similar pleasure when I perceive something as ‘fair’ or when I eat chocolate? Why can we be so profoundly hurt by bereavement? What are the … Continue reading

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Consciousness and the Social Brain

What is consciousness and how can a brain, a mere collection of neurons, create it? In Consciousness and the Social Brain, Princeton neuroscientist Michael Graziano lays out an audacious new theory to account for the deepest mystery of them all. … Continue reading

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The Emerging Field of Human Social Genomics

Although we generally experience our bodies as being biologically stable across time and situations, an emerging field of research is demonstrating that external social conditions, especially our subjective perceptions of those conditions, can influence our most basic internal biological processes—namely, … Continue reading

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The Science of Social Vision

The human visual system is particularly attuned to and remarkably efficient at processing social cues. We can effectively “read” others’ mental and emotional states and make snap judgments about their characters and dispositions, simply by watching them. Given what is … Continue reading

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The interactive brain hypothesis

Enactive approaches foreground the role of interpersonal interaction in explanations of social understanding. This motivates, in combination with a recent interest in neuroscientific studies involving actual interactions, the question of how interactive processes relate to neural mechanisms involved in social … Continue reading

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The Oxford Handbook of Social Neuroscience

The complexities of the brain and nervous system make neuroscience an inherently interdisciplinary pursuit, one that comprises disparate basic, clinical, and applied disciplines. Behavioral neuroscientists approach the brain and nervous system as instruments of sensation and response; cognitive neuroscientists view … Continue reading

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