Looking closely at the behavior and problem solving of animals can lead to discovering answers about ourselves. Duke University's Dr. Brian Hare has focused his investigations into the psychology of great apes, and canines. In studying the evolution of intelligence in man’s best friend, and our closest relative, Dr. Hare recognized that friendliness has become a survival technique for both species. Wolves and chimpanzees are fearful of strangers whereas dogs and bonobo monkeys have benefitted from their willingness to trust.
Animal psychology is not a widely studied field and academic researchers have to look outside of their own institutions in order to engage in comparative experiments. Is a dog smarter than a cat? Is a dolphin more intelligent than a chimpanzee? These questions are difficult to answer without shared data.
Dr. Hare is developing a tool encouraging collaboration between researchers in the field of comparative animal cognition. Connecting animal psychologists on a global level may lead to the discovery of new intelligences, and further the understanding of how cognition evolves.
Highlights from this installment of our award-winning “Stories of Impact” video series:
Learn more about the TWCF-funded research project related to this episode.
Read the transcript from the full interview conducted by journalist Richard Sergay. Featuring: Dr. Brian Hare, core member of the Center of Cognitive Neuroscience, a Professor in Evolutionary Anthropology, and Psychology and Neuroscience at Duke University.
Templeton World Charity Foundation’s “Stories of Impact” videos by journalist and senior media executive Richard Sergay feature human stories and critical perspectives on breakthroughs about the universe’s big questions. The inspiring narratives and observations in these award-winning videos portray the individual and societal impacts of the projects that bring to life TWCF-supported research.