Altruistic punishment as an explanation of hunter-gatherer cooperation: how much has experimental economics achieved?

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The discovery of the altruistic punishment mechanism as a replicable experimental result is a genuine achievement of behavioural economics. The hypothesis that cooperation in hunter-gatherer societies is sustained by altruistic punishment is a scientifically legitimate conjecture, but it must be tested against real-world observations. Guala's doubts about the evidential support for this hypothesis are well founded.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)40
Number of pages1
JournalBehavioral and Brain Sciences
Issue number01
Early online date31 Jan 2012
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2012

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