I am an evolutionary biologist who has always been fascinated by how animals organise their social life. Most social interactions within and between species are characterised by peaceful cooperation. However, the evolution of cooperation is not straightforward. Why do individuals help others instead of selfishly keeping the resources? I study such social interactions in the light of evolution both in the lab and in the field. Thereby, my main focus lies on cognitive and emotional processes that shape the decision to help. My studies are based on predictions derived from game theoretical models that I test experimentally. Besides, I have always been interested in welfare and conservation issues.

funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation