Fossil fuel companies have an incentive to prevent policies that would keep them from selling their assets. We should not be surprised, therefore, that these companies have taken steps to prevent such an outcome.
The fact that evolutionary selection pressures so often result in social pathologies might be hard to accept, but once faced squarely it can lead to an optimistic point of view.
Companies are great at evaluating skills but inconsistent at evaluating temperament due to unconscious bias. These biases are, in part, a natural outcome of the human species evolving in small, homogenous groups. But new tools can help us overcome our innate biases to achieve cultural change.
What behavioural economists neglected to answer is the ultimate question: why do people possess these psychological dispositions? Answering ultimate questions leads one to evolution, as the human brain has been honed by the forces of natural selection.
From the advent of the industrial revolution to the present, the business class paid scant attention to human nature. The social and physical design of organizations focused on efficiency and cost-savings. This resulted in a mismatch between our work environments and human nature.
Any behavioral science—including business—that does not acknowledge, understand, and utilize Tinbergen’s four evolutionary questions to guide research will simply be leaving variance left to be explained on the table, and will be fundamentally limited as a result.
‘Ruthless’ and ‘demanding’ are two descriptors of Amazon's working environment, sink or swim. But Amazon is not alone. Can evolutionary biology shed some light on why competition in the workplace does not alway produce the best outcomes?
Can businesses do well by doing good? Yes, according to this report headed by EI President David Sloan Wilson. The report provides a much needed alternative to the “Greed is Good” philosophy of orthodox economic theory, which has dominated the curriculum of business schools for over 50 years.
New evolutionary thinking about cooperation, groups, firms and societies.To explore the new implications of this vastly improved evolutionary theory for business, we recently organized a one-day symposium at Stern titled “Darwin’s Business: New Evolutionary Thinking About Cooperation, Groups, Firms and Societies.”