• UCL Twitter account
  • UCL YouTube channel
  • UCL Facebook page
  • UCL SoundCloud channel
  • UCL iTunes store

Information for Staff


Select dates to view past and future events

14:00 - 15:00 14 December 2015

Biological Markets and the Evolution of Human Cooperation


Room 305 | 26 Bedford Way (link Map)
London | WC1H 0DS | United Kingdom

Open to: Academic | Student

An special departmental seminar from Experimental Psychology.

Speaker: Pat Barclay, University of Guelph (Currently at Oxford).

Cooperation is crucial to our survival and social success. People typically choose their social partners (e.g., friends, allies, mates), which allows us to avoid bad partners and preferentially interact with better ones. This creates a biological market where people prefer to associate with others who are willing and able to confer benefits upon partners. In such a market, it pays to compete to be (or appear to be) more willing and able to help than competitors are, causing an arms race over any behaviour that signals these traits – including generosity or pro-environmentalism. Biological markets help us understand why we choose the partners we do, when and why people are cooperative and fair (and to what extent), and why individuals differ on these traits.

The host for the seminar will be Dr Nichola Raihani.


Antonietta Esposito
+44 (0) 207 679 5332 | a.esposito@ucl.ac.uk