Humans have been pursuing two fundamental social goals for millennia. We all need to connect well and cooperate with others to learn and thrive; but we also need to strive and develop our unique competencies and find opportunities for personal distinction and status. These recurring goals — along with their potential for conflict and the need to integrate them — are still with us today, in our personal lives and work lives.

In the ASC lab we pursue various research programs related to connecting and striving, and we think of adaptive behavior as thought and action that help create a workable balance between these two goals. How individuals, teams, and organizations deal with these social dynamics plays a big role in how effective and successful they will be.

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