The nature of prosociality in chimpanzees
MetadataShow full item record
An important debate centres around the nature of prosociality in nonhuman primates. Chimpanzees help other individuals in some experimental settings, yet they do not readily share food. One solution to this paradox is that they are motivated to help others provided there are no competing interests. However, benefits to recipients could arise as by-products of testing. Here we report two studies that separate by-product from intended helping in chimpanzees using a GO/NO-GO paradigm. Actors in one group could help a recipient by releasing a food box, but the same action for another group prevented a recipient from being able to get food. We find no evidence for helping – chimpanzees engaged in the test regardless of the effects on their partners. Illusory prosocial behaviour could arise as a by-product of task design.
Tennie , C , Jensen , K & Call , J 2016 , ' The nature of prosociality in chimpanzees ' Nature Communications , vol 7 , 13915 . DOI: 10.1038/ncomms13915
Copyright The Authors 2016. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
CT and JC were supported by a grant from the Economic and Social Research Council (ES/K008625/1) and the European Research Council (ERC-Synergy Project SOMICS 609819), respectively.
Items in the St Andrews Research Repository are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.