Researchers discover reasons for the global rise of monogamous cultures

News Institutions, Organizations & Growth 26.01.2012

A team of researchers, led by CIFAR’s Joseph Henrich, conducted a comprehensive study to explore why monogamous marriage had become the dominant cultural institution in developed nations. Most human societies have practiced polygamy in the past, and some still do.

The team discovered that monogamous culture has become a standard in many parts of the world because it leads to less social problems and greater net benefits for societies. Monogamy reduces the number of unmarried men competing for unmarried women, and in turn reduces social problems like crime, violence, poverty and gender inequality. The research team found that monogamous cultures make greater efforts toward achieving gender equality, and increasing long-term planning, and saving and child investments.

The study, titled “The puzzle of monogamous marriage” was published in the journal Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Related Ideas

Video | Institutions, Organizations & Growth

David Dodge CIFAR Lecture: Robotics, AI, and the Future of Work – Q&A

Mike Moffatt talks with CIFAR Senior Fellow Daron Acemoglu after his lecture at the Second Annual David Dodge CIFAR Lecture in Ottawa.

News | Institutions, Organizations & Growth

Review: Daron Acemoglu on Robotics, AI and the Future of Work

As society looks to the future and the potential of AI and robotics, CIFAR Senior Fellow and MIT economist Daron...

News | Institutions, Organizations & Growth

What witch doctors can teach us about climate change

Superstitious beliefs and magical thinking exist in all cultures, from the fear of “unlucky” numbers or faith in horoscopes to...