en
Scientific article
Open access
English

Neurocognitive underpinnings of aggressive predation in economic contests

Published inJournal of Cognitive Neuroscience, vol. 32, no. 7, p. 1276-1288
Publication date2020
Abstract

Competitions are part and parcel of daily life and require people to invest time and energy to gain advantage over others and to avoid (the risk of) falling behind. Whereas the behavioral mechanisms underlying competition are well documented, its neurocognitive underpinnings remain poorly understood. We addressed this using neuroimaging and computational modeling of individual investment decisions aimed at exploiting one's counterpart (“attack”) or at protecting against exploitation by one's counterpart (“defense”). Analyses revealed that during attack relative to defense (i) individuals invest less and are less successful; (ii) computations of expected reward are strategically more sophisticated (reasoning level k = 4 vs. k = 3 during defense); (iii) ventral striatum activity tracks reward prediction errors; (iv) risk prediction errors were not correlated with neural activity in either ROI or whole-brain analyses; and (v) successful exploitation correlated with neural activity in the bilateral ventral striatum, left OFC, left anterior insula, left TPJ, and lateral occipital cortex. We conclude that, in economic contests, coming out ahead (vs. not falling behind) involves sophisticated strategic reasoning that engages both reward and value computation areas and areas associated with theory of mind.

Citation (ISO format)
ROJEK-GIFFIN, Michael et al. Neurocognitive underpinnings of aggressive predation in economic contests. In: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 2020, vol. 32, n° 7, p. 1276–1288. doi: 10.1162/jocn_a_01545
Main files (1)
Article (Published version)
accessLevelPublic
Identifiers
ISSN of the journal0898-929X
240views
136downloads

Technical informations

Creation08/20/2020 9:15:00 AM
First validation08/20/2020 9:15:00 AM
Update time03/15/2023 10:33:31 PM
Status update03/15/2023 10:33:31 PM
Last indexation01/17/2024 10:48:21 AM
All rights reserved by Archive ouverte UNIGE and the University of GenevaunigeBlack