Francesca Pancotto, Simone Righi
Scientifc Reports, 11, 12745 (2021)
Abstract: Is pro sociality a natural impulse or the result of a self-controlled behavior? We investigate this issue in a lab in the field experiment with participants from the general adult population in Italy. We find two key results: first, that there is a positive relationship between pro sociality and strategic reasoning. Second, that reflectivity relates to lower pro sociality but only among strategic subjects, indicating that the intuitive view of pro sociality is valid only among strategic individuals. Non-strategic individuals are instead intuitively selfish. We surmise that these results emerge due to a common cognitive root between strategizing and pro sociality, namely empathy.