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EVOLUTION / COGNITION / SOCIETY

EVOLUTION / COGNITION / SOCIETY

Human beings naturally interact with each other. This social behaviour is allowed by a powerful element existing between us: trust. At ISTC the Trust, Theory and Technology Group (T3) works to build up a complete theory of trust. 

The world is full of social facts. Paying the bill, getting married or owning a house: these actions don't belong strictly to the universe of natural facts, but we cannot say they do not exist. What is then the nature of social reality? At ISTC the Goal-Oriented Agents Lab (GOAL) is trying to find an answer starting from the approach of cognitive science. 

Did you ever think about gossip as a complex social activity? Chatting is one of the most universal social behaviour and it is not just a frivolous entertainment. At ISTC the Laboratory of Agent-Based Social Simulation (LABSS) is developing computational models to understand the cognitive basis of gossip. 

Cognitive and social processes in early childhood have widely been explored over the past thirty years. At ISTC the Human Development and Society Group (HDS) is giving important contributions to the study of relationships between  these processes during young children's experience in their educational contexts.

Grooming, cofeeding, agonistic alliances: these behaviours in primates can be defined as altruistic, since they benefit the recipient at some costs to the actor. At ISTC the Unit of Cognitive Primatology (UCP) found that the role of altruism in primate evolution is significant in order to explain their social behaviour. 

Unexpected events, possible dangers, mismatches: the feeling of surprise is triggered by many different factors. How do its mechanisms work and why is surprise so important? At ISTC the Goal-Oriented Agents Laboratory (GOAL) is working to build a cognitive model of surprise.