The influence of mate choice motivation on non-financial altruism

Abstract

Several studies have found that individuals are more altruistic towards potential mates than others, suggesting altruistic behavior may be a mating signal. Much of the literature focuses on financial altruism using economic games, however altruism can also comprise of non-financial acts, which this experiment examined in an attempt to replicate and refine previous findings. A study was conducted with 199 participants, who viewed both high attractive and low attractive opposite-sex images and were asked how likely they would be to altruistically share their research credits with the person in the image, whilst controlling for self-rated attractiveness. The findings suggest that both men and women were more altruistic towards pictures of high attractive than low attractive potential mating partners (Cohen’s d = 0.37). This study therefore partially replicates previous research examining the role of mate choice effects when exploring non-financial altruism.

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Correspondence to Manpal Singh Bhogal.

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Bhogal, M.S., Bartlett, J.E. & Farrelly, D. The influence of mate choice motivation on non-financial altruism. Curr Psychol 38, 959–964 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12144-018-0070-x

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Keywords

  • Altruism
  • Sexual selection theory
  • Mate choice
  • Prosocial behavior
  • Attractiveness