Chimpanzees and bonobos distinguish between risk and ambiguity.

Loading...
Thumbnail Image

Date

2011-02-23

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title

Repository Usage Stats

228
views
359
downloads

Citation Stats

Abstract

Although recent research has investigated animal decision-making under risk, little is known about how animals choose under conditions of ambiguity when they lack information about the available alternatives. Many models of choice behaviour assume that ambiguity does not impact decision-makers, but studies of humans suggest that people tend to be more averse to choosing ambiguous options than risky options with known probabilities. To illuminate the evolutionary roots of human economic behaviour, we examined whether our closest living relatives, chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) and bonobos (Pan paniscus), share this bias against ambiguity. Apes chose between a certain option that reliably provided an intermediately preferred food type, and a variable option that could vary in the probability that it provided a highly preferred food type. To examine the impact of ambiguity on ape decision-making, we interspersed trials in which chimpanzees and bonobos had no knowledge about the probabilities. Both species avoided the ambiguous option compared with their choices for a risky option, indicating that ambiguity aversion is shared by humans, bonobos and chimpanzees.

Department

Description

Provenance

Citation

Published Version (Please cite this version)

10.1098/rsbl.2010.0927

Publication Info

Rosati, Alexandra G, and Brian Hare (2011). Chimpanzees and bonobos distinguish between risk and ambiguity. Biol Lett, 7(1). pp. 15–18. 10.1098/rsbl.2010.0927 Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/6948.

This is constructed from limited available data and may be imprecise. To cite this article, please review & use the official citation provided by the journal.

Scholars@Duke

Hare

Brian Hare

Professor of Evolutionary Anthropology

Unless otherwise indicated, scholarly articles published by Duke faculty members are made available here with a CC-BY-NC (Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial) license, as enabled by the Duke Open Access Policy. If you wish to use the materials in ways not already permitted under CC-BY-NC, please consult the copyright owner. Other materials are made available here through the author’s grant of a non-exclusive license to make their work openly accessible.