Social Networks and Personality as Predictors of Cooperation in Capuchin Monkeys (Sapajus apella)
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Understanding social phenomena requires examination of both group-level and individual-level perspectives. Cooperation, which requires two or more individuals to work together to complete a task for mutual benefit, is a behavior that relies on the willingness of both individuals and therefore, the relationship of the participants. While social network analysis (SNA) offers the opportunity to understand the group level interactions and individual social tendencies that allow for cooperation, personality analysis enables us to understand the underlying cause for individuals’ social tendencies that lead to such complex behavior. In this study, my goal was to better understand cooperation in capuchin monkeys at the dyadic and individual level, using SNA metrics and personality measures. A total of 144 dyads were given a sequential, token-transfer cooperation task. To examine predictors of cooperation, I used grooming frequencies extracted from long-term behavioral monitoring data to construct social network metrics using UCINET software. I also determined component scores for each subject on five previously published capuchin personality dimensions. Using General Linear Mixed Modeling, I found that bond strength positively predicted the likelihood of cooperation. Additionally, individual measures of breadth of grooming partners positively predicted an individual’s likelihood to initiate a cooperative event. An individual’s centrality in the network significantly predicted cooperation, but only in one of the two colonies. For personality dimensions, Neuroticism, and Sociability also increased the likelihood of cooperation. Taken together, results suggest that individual motivations to cooperate may be driven by sensitivity to fairness and reciprocity, while motivations within the dyad may be an effect of strong social bonding.
Franklin and Marshall College Archives, Undergraduate Honors Thesis 2018
- F&M Theses Collection