Research Topic

Social interaction in Animals: linking experimental approach and social network analysis

About this Research Topic

Understanding the link between individual behaviour and population organization and functioning has long been central to ecology and evolutionary biology. Behaviour is a response to intrinsic and extrinsic factors including individual state, ecological factors or social interactions. Within a group, each ...

Understanding the link between individual behaviour and population organization and functioning has long been central to ecology and evolutionary biology. Behaviour is a response to intrinsic and extrinsic factors including individual state, ecological factors or social interactions. Within a group, each individual can be seen as part of a network of social interactions varying in strength, type and dynamic. The structure of this network can deeply impact the ecology and evolution of individuals, populations and species. Within a group social interactions can take many forms and may significantly affect an individual’s fitness. These interactions may result in complex systems at the group-level, such as in the case of collective decisions (to migrate, to build nest or to forage). Among them, social transmission of information has been studied mostly in vertebrates: fish, birds and mammals including humans. In insects, social learning has been unambiguously demonstrated in social Hymenoptera but this probably reflects limited research effort and recent evidence show that even non-eusocial insects such as Drosophila, cockroaches and crickets can copy the behaviour of others. Compared to individual learning, which requires a trial and error period every generation, social learning can potentially result in the stable transmission of behaviours across generations, leading to cultural traditions in some species. The study of the processes which may facilitate or prevent this transmission and the analyses of the relationship between social network structure and efficiency of social transmission became these recent years an emerging and promising field of research.

The goal of this research topic is to present the genetic and socio-environmental factors affecting social interaction and information transmission with the integration of experimental approaches, social network analyses and modelling. Using different animal species, this research topic will investigate (1) how the structure of a group affects social interaction, information transfer and collective decisions; (2) how individuals within and between species treat different sources of information (in particular personal vs. social information) according to their sociality and personality, and (3) the genetic bases of social information use. Importantly, we aim to understand whether a relationship between social network structures and dynamics can reflect the efficiency of social transmission, i.e. can we use social network analysis to predict the social transmission of information, collective decision-making and ultimately the evolutionary trajectory of a group?


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

Recent Articles

Loading..

About Frontiers Research Topics

With their unique mixes of varied contributions from Original Research to Review Articles, Research Topics unify the most influential researchers, the latest key findings and historical advances in a hot research area! Find out more on how to host your own Frontiers Research Topic or contribute to one as an author.

Topic Editors

Loading..

Submission Deadlines

Submission closed.

Participating Journals

Loading..

Topic Editors

Loading..

Submission Deadlines

Submission closed.

Participating Journals

Loading..
Loading..

total views article views article downloads topic views

}
 
Top countries
Top referring sites
Loading..

Comments

Loading..

Add a comment

Add comment
Back to top