Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Daughters are better for the family (long-term.)

Recently, researches* got hold of a treasure trove of mobile phone data, including information about callers' age, gender, and location. By analyzing the frequency of interaction, e.g. via calls and texts, they were able to discern the strength of users' social connections and how they change with age. One of the findings relates to relationships within the family:
... the most dramatic conclusion from this work is about the pattern of social relationships that play the most important role in society. Palchykov and co say the tendency in the past has been to assume that father-son relationships dominate.
By contrast, “our results tend to support the claim that mother-daughter relationships play a particularly seminal role in structuring human social relationships,” they say.
...female reproductive strategies change more explicitly as they age, switching from mate choice to personal reproduction to parental investment and finally grandparental investment, particularly after they reach 40.
Read the whole thing at MIT Tech Review or the original paper at arxiv.org
* Vasyl Palchykov, Kimmo Kaski, János Kertész, Albert-László Barabási, and Robin I.M. Dunbar. Sex differences in intimate relationships. 2012.

tags: social, networking, psychology, demographics

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