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Title:
Cross-country relationships between life expectancy, intertemporal choice and age at first birth
Authors:
Bulley, A., Pepper, G. V.
Journal:
Evolution and Human Behavior (2017)

Humans, like other animals, typically discount the value of delayed rewards relative to those available in the present. From an evolutionary perspective, prioritising immediate rewards is a predictable response to high local mortality rates, as is an acceleration of reproductive scheduling. In a sample of 46 countries, we explored the crosscountry relationships between average life expectancy, intertemporal choice, and women's age at first birth. We find that, across countries, lower life expectancy is associated with both a smaller percentage of people willing to wait for a larger but delayed reward, as well as a younger age at first birth. These results, which hold when controlling for region and economic pressure (GDP-per capita), dovetail with findings at the individual level to suggest that life expectancy is an important ecological predictor of both intertemporal and reproductive decision-making

Keywords: Intertemporal choice Delay discounting Evolution Mortality Age at first birth Human behavioral ecology

Accessed: 560 times
Created: Thursday, 18th May 2017 by uqpjack1
Modified: Thursday, 18th May 2017 by uqpjack1
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