“The Hidden Logic of Bad Decisions”

How Evolution and Development Shape Personality and Life Choices

Humans often engage in behaviors that seem misguided or short-sighted. Many people act in ways that are impulsive, aggressive, or promiscuous despite negative consequences, and some are more prone to these behaviors than others. New research on developmental biology combined with evolutionary theory suggests that such traits may represent adaptations to conditions in the early environment.

Michael J. Frederick is an Assistant Professor in the Division of Applied Behavioral Sciences at the University of Baltimore. He received his Ph.D. in Biopsychology with an emphasis in evolutionary psychology from the University of Albany. His research examines behaviors that seem maladaptive or counterintuitive, but that might serve an adaptive function in certain evolutionary contexts.

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