Human Culture, The Cultural Brain, And Political Corruption | Michael Muthukrishna

Dr. Michael Muthukrishna is an Assistant Professor of Economic Psychology at the London School of Economics. His other affiliations include Research Associate of the Department of Human Evolutionary Biology at Harvard University, Affiliate of the Developmental Economics Group at STICERD, and Technical Director of The Database of Religious History. His research focuses on the psychological and evolutionary processes that underlie culture and how culture is transmitted, maintained, and modified. He’s interested in better understanding the dynamic relationship between “cultures” and individuals, where cultures emerge from the interactions of individuals over time, who are in turn shaped by the emergent cultures they constitute. He’s particularly interested in the application of research in cultural evolution to public policy. In this episode, we first talk about the interplay between biology and culture in explaining large-scale human cooperation, and the biological bases of human culture. We then refer to the Cultural Brain Hypothesis, the relationship between individual-level psychology and group-level traits, genetic and cultural evolution, and contentious topic of group selection. Finally, we talk about prosocial institutions, and political corruption and how societies might promote it and also common strategies to fight it that might backfire. Time Links: 01:02 The aspects of psychology economics is most interested in 02:01 Large-scale human cooperation, biology and culture 04:38 Human culture, and cumulative culture 12:02 The Cultural Brain Hypothesis 24:39 The interplay between individual-level psychology and group-level traits 28:38 Genetic and cultural evolution 40:48 About group selection 47:05 The role that social institutions play in human societies 52:52 What is political corruption? 1:01:14 Social factors that promote political corruption 1:05:15 Anti-corruption measures that might backfire 1:10:26 Follow Dr. Muthukrishna’s work! — Follow Dr. Muthukrishna’s work: Faculty page: Articles of Researchgate: Twitter handle: @mmuthukrishna Referenced papers/concepts/books: The Baldwin Effect: Cultural Evolution: The Secret of Our Success (Joe Henrich): A Different Kind of Animal (Rob Boyd): Darwin’s Unfinished Symphony (Kevin Laland): This View of Life (David S. Wilson):

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Posts