Together with artifacts from the past, ancient DNA can fill in details about our ancient ancestors.
Nina R/Wikimedia Commons
A new study doubles the age of ancient DNA in sub-Saharan Africa, revealing how people moved, mingled and had children together over the last 50,000 years.
What’s right for those we care for is often not what we choose for ourselves.
New research shows that though we are good at making healthy choices for those we care for, we are often subsequently less good at taking care of ourselves.
Prominently placing fresh produce can encourage healthier choices.
Brianna Soukup/Portland Press Herald via Getty Images
Behavioral economics, long employed in grocery stores to guide customers to certain products, could be employed by food banks and pantries to encourage healthier choices.
Researchers unearthed the 105,000-year-old artefacts from a spiritual site in southern Africa. Although far from the coast, the area is associated with stories of a great water snake.
Once upon a time, buckling up was new behavior.
Harold M. Lambert/Archive Photos via Getty Images
Public health recommendations have always been a hard sell. Resistance to new behaviors – like the mask-wearing and social distancing advised during the COVID-19 pandemic – is part of human nature.
Footprints, preserved in solidified ash, hint at human behavior from as long as 19,000 years ago.
The footprints of over 20 different prehistoric people, pressed into volcanic ash thousands of years ago in Tanzania, show possible evidence for sexual division of labor in this ancient community.
In scary and uncertain times, having a stockpile can feel soothing.
AP Photo/Ted S. Warren
Faced with uncertain and anxious times, brains send out instructions to start stockpiling supplies – whether you’re a person facing a pandemic, or a rodent prepping for a long winter.
Behavior is changing because of the coronavirus. Is perceived risk the reason why?
AP Photo/Steven Senne
Using a survey taken from March 10 – March 16, social scientists tried to untangle the complicated connection between feelings of vulnerability and behavior change in response to the coronavirus.
Those who are the loudest in their morality may not be the most moral among us.
People who act holier than thou aren’t necessarily better than the rest of us. In fact, their moral grandstanding may be driving society apart.
Willpower and habits involve different parts of the brain.
It’s incredibly difficult to will away bad habits. But two simple strategies can make things easier.
What goes into all for one and one for all?
Where do the cooperative skills that hold together human societies come from and why don’t our selfish instincts overwhelm them? Evolutionary game theory suggests that empathy is a crucial contributor.
Just sitting on a park bench, completely ignoring each other.
Americans are spending almost three and a half hours on their phones and tablets every day, twice the amount just five years ago. A behavioral scientist offers a few tips on how to take control.
By only working in their own backyards, what do psychology researchers miss about human behavior?
Ninety percent of psychology studies come from countries representing less than 15 percent of the world’s population. Researchers are realizing that universalizing those findings might not make sense.
Governments can use nudges to influence our choices.
Law professor Cass Sunstein, on why behavioural science is always nudging us.
The Conversation 20.5 MB (download)
Governments and businesses are using "nudges" to influence our choices, but how? On this podcast episode, Cass Sunstein, a Harvard professor who wrote the book on nudges, unpacks behavioural science.
What happens when an entire society succumbs to childlike behavior and discourse?
Our social institutions and politics suffer from a collective arrested development – and our relationship to technology has only exacerbated this trend.
We’ll say someone’s brainwashed only when we disagree with their beliefs or actions.
Forty years ago, Rebecca Moore’s two sisters helped plan the Jonestown massacre. But she refuses to say they were brainwashed, arguing that it prevents us from truly understanding their behavior.
Trump and Putin shake hands at the conclusion of their joint news conference.
AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais
Research on proactive behavior shows it can help people perform better at their jobs. A failure to do so can be even more consequential.
The universal sign for ‘Look over there!’ isn’t so common in some cultures.
It was long thought that humans everywhere favor pointing with the index finger. But some fieldwork out of Papua New Guinea identified a group of people who prefer to scrunch their noses.
Big data makes it a bit easier to guess your next move.
Predicting human behavior is big business. But science may never be able to do so with perfect certainty.
A product’s calorie label is a common form of nudging behavior.
AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin
Government initiatives to prod people to make better decisions got a lot of attention after Richard Thaler won a Nobel in economics for his working on nudging.