Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Just in Time for Valentine’s Day: Falling in Love in Three Minutes or Less

14.02.2005


It seems that the heart wants what the heart wants -- and it can figure it out fairly quickly, according to evolutionary psychologists at the University of Pennsylvania. The researchers studied dating data from 10,526 anonymous participants of HurryDate, a company that organizes "speed dating" sessions, and found rare behavioral data on how people genuinely act in dating situations.



"Some people say they’re looking for one kind of person, then choose another. Other people say that don even know what theye looking for. But our data suggest that, however it happens, people know it quickly when they see it," said Robert Kurzban, an assistant professor in Penn Department of Psychology. "People generally understand their own worth on the dating market, so they are able to judge each otherspotential compatibility within moments of meeting."

At each HurryDate party, roughly 25 men and 25 women interact with each other for three minutes at a time. At the end of the session, each participant indicates which of the people he or she met would be of interest for the future. HurryDate also collects survey data from participants, including age, height, education, income, drinking behavior, smoking behavior, race and religion. For this study, HurryDate also collected answers to optional questions about such things as how participants rate their own attractiveness and sexuality.


"Although they had three minutes, most participants made their decision based on the information that they probably got in the first three seconds," Kurzban said. "Somewhat surprisingly, factors that you might think would be really important to people, like religion, education and income, played very little role in their choices."

Psychology has often viewed relationships as transactions where people select mates based on substantial qualities a mate has to offer, such as power and money. According to Kurzban, the data show that, when people meet face-to-face, things like smoking preferences and bank accounts don seem to loom large in intricate complexities of attraction.

"The speed dating offered us, as psychologists, something that we rarely get in conducting research: a systematic look at the genuine behavior of people selecting mates," Kurzban said. "The actual behavior of people is worth more to us than their stated beliefs. In this case, because participants might suffer the consequences of a bad date with someone who might look compatible on paper, they had more incentive to follow their hearts and desires. Behavior, more than self-reports, give us an important window into the underlying psychology of mating."

Kurzban got the idea to study speed dating when he saw an ad for HurryDate and realized it represented a potential treasure trove of data. Kurzban teamed with Jason Weeden who was working on his doctorate in psychology at the time, to study and interpret the data.

The researchers caution that speed dating is not necessarily typical of how people usually interact. Their findings might or might not characterize long-term dating relationships.

Their findings will be presented in an upcoming issue of the journal Evolution and Human Behavior.

Hurry Brands LLC, the parent company of HurryDate, did not fund Kurzban and Weeden in their research, but they did absorb the costs of compiling and generating the anonymous data for use in the study.

Note to TV producers and assignment editors: The University of Pennsylvania has an on-campus television studio with satellite uplink, live-shot capability for interviews with Penn experts.

Greg Lester | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.upenn.edu

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht A sudden drop in outdoor temperature increases the risk of respiratory infections
11.01.2017 | University of Gothenburg

nachricht Urbanization to convert 300,000 km2 of prime croplands
27.12.2016 | Mercator Research Institute on Global Commons and Climate Change (MCC) gGmbH

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Designing Architecture with Solar Building Envelopes

Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.

As part of the “ArKol – development of architecturally highly integrated façade collectors with heat pipes” project, Fraunhofer ISE together with its partners...

Im Focus: How to inflate a hardened concrete shell with a weight of 80 t

At TU Wien, an alternative for resource intensive formwork for the construction of concrete domes was developed. It is now used in a test dome for the Austrian Federal Railways Infrastructure (ÖBB Infrastruktur).

Concrete shells are efficient structures, but not very resource efficient. The formwork for the construction of concrete domes alone requires a high amount of...

Im Focus: Bacterial Pac Man molecule snaps at sugar

Many pathogens use certain sugar compounds from their host to help conceal themselves against the immune system. Scientists at the University of Bonn have now, in cooperation with researchers at the University of York in the United Kingdom, analyzed the dynamics of a bacterial molecule that is involved in this process. They demonstrate that the protein grabs onto the sugar molecule with a Pac Man-like chewing motion and holds it until it can be used. Their results could help design therapeutics that could make the protein poorer at grabbing and holding and hence compromise the pathogen in the host. The study has now been published in “Biophysical Journal”.

The cells of the mouth, nose and intestinal mucosa produce large quantities of a chemical called sialic acid. Many bacteria possess a special transport system...

Im Focus: Newly proposed reference datasets improve weather satellite data quality

UMD, NOAA collaboration demonstrates suitability of in-orbit datasets for weather satellite calibration

"Traffic and weather, together on the hour!" blasts your local radio station, while your smartphone knows the weather halfway across the world. A network of...

Im Focus: Repairing defects in fiber-reinforced plastics more efficiently

Fiber-reinforced plastics (FRP) are frequently used in the aeronautic and automobile industry. However, the repair of workpieces made of these composite materials is often less profitable than exchanging the part. In order to increase the lifetime of FRP parts and to make them more eco-efficient, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) and the Apodius GmbH want to combine a new measuring device for fiber layer orientation with an innovative laser-based repair process.

Defects in FRP pieces may be production or operation-related. Whether or not repair is cost-effective depends on the geometry of the defective area, the tools...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

Nothing will happen without batteries making it happen!

05.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Multiregional brain on a chip

16.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

New technology enables 5-D imaging in live animals, humans

16.01.2017 | Information Technology

Researchers develop environmentally friendly soy air filter

16.01.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>