Follow me

Van Vugt, Mark (2008) Follow me. New Scientist, 198 (2660). pp. 42-45. ISSN 0262-4079. (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

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Until recently, very few people have considered the origins of leadership. Yet to understand how our ancestors acquired the psychological biases upon which leadership is based is to see the concept in a whole new light. It can also indicate what sort of leader is best suited to take charge in a particular situation. An obvious concept of leadership is for one individual to take the initiative and provide guidance while the rest agree to follow. If this strategy promotes survival, then psychological adaptations for both leadership and "followership" are likely to evolve. In humans these would have included specialized mental mechanisms for planning, communication, group decision-making, competence recognition, social learning and conflict management. Although such traits are generally associated with higher reasoning, cognitive pre-adaptations for leadership probably evolved long before modern humans ever appeared on the scene.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Psychology > Social Psychology
Depositing User: Louise Dorman
Date Deposited: 07 Apr 2009 13:56
Last Modified: 11 Jun 2014 11:33
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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