Summary of How Do We Cooperate?

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How Do We Cooperate? summary
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  • Scientific


In this cerebral conversation, author and philosopher Rolf Dobelli interviews Ernst Fehr, a pioneer in the discipline of neuroeconomics. While their chat is unwieldy and disjointed, it reveals some captivating insights into this new branch of economics. getAbstract recommends this 23-minute video to anyone interested in fresh research about the brain, economics or human nature.

About the Speaker

Ernst Fehr is professor of economics at the University of Zurich.



Ernst Fehr, a neuroeconomist, studies the brain and human behavior. Specifically, he conducts experiments to examine how changing levels of neural activity in the brain affect “norm compliance.” Fehr employs “transcranial direct current stimulation”; that is, using a cathode and an anode, he applies a current – so gentle that subjects don’t feel it – to the “right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex.” If he places the cathode on the area, he can “down-regulate” neural activity; if he places the anode on that spot, he can “up-regulate” neural activity. This manipulation alters subjects’ tendency to comply with social norms.

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