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Read our June issue

This month read about incidental ostracism, why we obscure positive traits and good deeds, social influence maximization, moralization and violent protests, and more. 

Latest Research

  • Letter |

    Analysing high-resolution mobility traces from almost 40,000 individuals reveals that people typically revisit a set of 25 familiar locations day-to-day, but that this set evolves over time and is proportional to the size of their social sphere.

    • Laura Alessandretti
    • , Piotr Sapiezynski
    • , Vedran Sekara
    • , Sune Lehmann
    •  & Andrea Baronchelli
  • Letter |

    Kavanagh and colleagues model global human population densities between 21,000 and 4,000 years ago and find that improved environmental conditions and increased potential for population growth facilitated the emergence of agricultural domestication.

    • Patrick H. Kavanagh
    • , Bruno Vilela
    • , Hannah J. Haynie
    • , Ty Tuff
    • , Matheus Lima-Ribeiro
    • , Russell D. Gray
    • , Carlos A. Botero
    •  & Michael C. Gavin
  • Article |

    Lindström and Tobler find that ostracism of individuals can emerge incidentally, based on initial group structure, and is propagated by a simple reinforcement learning mechanism. The same mechanism can be used to reduce incidental ostracism.

    • Björn Lindström
    •  & Philippe N. Tobler
  • Article |

    Analytis et al. study social learning strategies for matters of taste and test their performance on a large-scale dataset. They show why a strategy’s success depends both on people’s level of experience and how their tastes relate to those of others.

    • Pantelis P. Analytis
    • , Daniel Barkoczi
    •  & Stefan M. Herzog

News & Comment

  • Comment |

    Video games are increasingly exposing young players to randomized in-game reward mechanisms, purchasable for real money — so-called loot boxes. Do loot boxes constitute a form of gambling?

    • Aaron Drummond
    •  & James D. Sauer
  • Comment |

    The complex research, policy and industrial challenges of the twenty-first century require collaborative problem solving. Assessments suggest that, globally, many graduates lack necessary competencies. There is a pressing need, therefore, to improve and expand teaching of collaborative problem solving in our education systems.

    • Stephen M. Fiore
    • , Arthur Graesser
    •  & Samuel Greiff
  • News & Views |

    Online communication has become integral to modern political behaviour — to the extent that events online both reflect and influence actions offline. A study uses geolocated Twitter data to argue that moralization of protests leads to violent protests and increased support for violence.

    • Zachary C. Steinert-Threlkeld

About the Journal

  • Nature Human Behaviour publishes research of outstanding significance into any aspect of human behaviour: its psychological, biological, and social bases, as well as its origins, development, and disorders. The journal aims to enhance the visibility of research into human behaviour, strengthening its societal reach and impact.
  • We publish a range of content types including original research articles, Reviews, Perspectives, Comments, News, and Features that elaborate on significant advances in the field and cover topical issues.
  • Nature Human Behaviour is staffed by a dedicated team of professional editors, with relevant research backgrounds. It is led by Stavroula Kousta, formerly the Editor of Trends in Cognitive Sciences and Senior Editor at PLOS Biology, and also includes John Carson, Anne-Marike Schiffer, and Mary Elizabeth Sutherland.
  • In addition to our in-house editors, Nature Human Behaviour has an external advisory panel to assist journal development in science and policy.
  • Contact information for editorial staff, submissions, the press office, institutional access and advertising at Nature Human Behaviour


  • Witchcraft beliefs are and have been widespread in human societies, but what impact do they have on social interactions and what cultural evolutionary function might they serve? Field experiments and network data show that the witchcraft label ‘Zhu’ influences labour-sharing and reproductive choices in a large network of southwest Chinese villages. Zhu is not an indicator of prosociality, but may function to spite or damage rivals.


Clinical Trials

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Clinical Trials

As of January 25, 2018, the NIH, the biggest funder of biomedical research in the world, is implementing policy changes which will affect the majority of US laboratories working with human subjects. We think it is vital for all parties, external stakeholders and the public to engage in an informed, productive debate about these developments to identify issues and opportunities. In this special collection of commissioned opinion pieces, representatives of international funding agencies and science regulators, non-profit organizations and think tanks, and leading basic and clinical researchers in the US and Europe contribute novel, thought-provoking arguments. In an accompanying Q&A, Michael Lauer of the NIH addresses questions regarding the implementation and gives advice on future grant applications.

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