Here at the Social Development and Learning Lab, we are interested in how children become cooperative members of their societies. Our research focuses on the cognitive and social processes that underlie children’s interactions, particularly when material resources are involved.

We use experiments and draw on game theory to answer questions such as:

  • When do children view earning material resources as competitive versus cooperative?
  • What kinds of situations do children consider fair at different ages?
  • How does culture influence the concept of fairness?
  • How do children come to understand ownership and private property?
  • How do children explain, and sometimes forgive, others’ unfair behaviors?
  • How do children think about their own, and others’, socioeconomic status?

To find out more about who we are and what we do, look at our current projects and staff pages, or read our posts below!

Can unfairness be fair?

One of the most common catchphrases we hear young children use is “That’s not fair!”. This raises the question: what do children think is fair? In a new study by the Social Development and Learning Lab (SDLL), participants watched… Read more →

Contact Us

  • Email us
  • Give us a call (617) 358-7236
  • Visit us Room 118, 64 Cummington Mall Boston, MA 02215

Information for Students

Want to volunteer?We hire volunteer and directed study students for each semester. We're looking for responsible, energetic students with a passion for research! Help us run studies, interact with parents and participants, enter data, and more.

Interested? Find out more!