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Summary Griskevicius Et Al. 2012 - Week 3 Efb

- Ethics and the Future of Business MCM
- 2022 - 2023
32 Flashcards & Notes
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A snapshot of the summary - Griskevicius et al. 2012 - Week 3 EFB

  • 2 Griskevicius et al, 2012

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  • What do the authors do from their evolutionary perspective on behaviour? What question is linked to this?
    How might a given behaviour have helped our ancestors to survive or reproduce?
  • When explaining behaviour a distinction is made between which 2 things and shortly illustrate them both?
    1. Proximate behaviour: culture, incentives, preferences, learning, utility, pleasure, values, personality etc.
    2. Ultimate behaviour: Evolutionary bases.
  • When looking at a kid that prefers a donut over broccoli, how is this explained from a proximate behaviour and from ultimate behaviour?
    Proximate behaviour: because it tastes better.
    Ultimate behaviour: humans have inherited a disposition to crave fatty foods, they provided our ancestors with high calories which were needed to survive.
  • 2.1 Pre-dispositions

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  • We have inherited pre-dispositions which enabled our ancestors to survive but they contribute to ecological degradation in the present world. Which 5 are these?
    1. Propensity for self-interest.
    2. Desire for relative status.
    3. Tendency to unconsciously copy others.
    4. Temporal discounting; predisposition to be short-sighted.
    5. Tendency to disregard impalpable concerns.
  • What do they argue by applying the evolutionary perspective and looking at the pre-dispositions?
    If you want to stimulate more sustainable behaviour, you should match your strategy to these evolutionary pre-dispositions.
  • 2.1.1 Propensity for self-interest

  • What is the first pre-disposition about, which is called: Propensity (tendency) for self-interest? What are the three principles?
    • Kin selection: 
      • Survival and replication of genes (humans have a propensity to prioritise the replication of their own genes).
    • Reciprocal altruism: 
      • Cooperation with non-kin only if they (expect to) reciprocate or to gain reputation.
    • Indirect reciprocity: 
      • Helping strangers to gain a reputation for being cooperative which is associated with increased status in a social hierarchy and more opportunties for alliances. 
  • What is the tendency of this pre-disposition?
    People prioritize self-interst over group behavior.
  • What are solutions to link this to more sustainable behaviour?
    1. Highlight individual benefits to a person's genetic self-interest
    2. Create small dense social networks resembling ancestral groups
    3. Threaten reputations and foster group identities
    4. Donate first to create obligation, then ask to reciprocate (do something in return)
  • What is an example of a strategy to get people to behave more sustainably?
    Emphasise own kin, children or grandchildren but not future generations. E.g. Urge people to conserve water because there otherwise might not be enough for their children and grandchildren.
  • 2.1.2 Desire for relative status

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  • What is the main reason behind the pre-disposition: Desire for relative status?
    Relative status improves reproductive opportunities.
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