Peter Blake, EdD
Assistant Professor
Boston University College of Arts and Sciences
Dept of Psychological and Brain Sciences

PhD, Harvard University
MEd, Harvard University
MBA, Boston University
EdD, Harvard University

Peter Blake is an assistant professor of psychology at Boston University and the director of the Social Development and Learning Lab. He received his doctorate in human development and psychology from Harvard Graduate School of Education. Prior to his appointment at Boston University he held a position as a postdoctoral researcher at the Program for Evolutionary Dynamics at Harvard University. He currently collaborates with game theorists, anthropologists, and other developmental psychologists to create new approaches to studying cooperation in children.

Research Interests:
Peter's general interest is in social cognitive development, but his research focuses on three important foundations of human life: cooperation, fairness and ownership. He is interested in the cognitive and social processes that underlie children’s social interactions around material goods. More concretely, he asks questions such as: when should you share and when should you compete for resources? Is equal always fair or can you sometimes keep more for yourself? How do you know when a toy is owned and what does that mean? His experiments are based on game theory, which means that children can gain or lose resources like candy or stickers depending on their decisions. He is currently extending projects to different cultures in order to look for common developmental patterns and assess cultural variables that influence cooperation.

Boston University College of Arts and Sciences
Psychological and Brain Sciences
Child Development Labs

The Role of Gratitude in Early Presocial Behavior
09/01/2015 - 08/31/2017 (PI)
University of California, Berkeley John Templeton Fdn

Cognitive Underpinning and Consequences of Generosity
09/01/2015 - 08/31/2017 (PI)
Trustees of Boston College John Templeton Fdn

Gratitude in Development: Cognitive, Affective and Normative Dimensions
09/01/2013 - 07/31/2014 (PI)
Yale University John Templeton Fdn

Gratitude in Development: Cognitive, Affective and Normative Dimensions
09/01/2012 - 07/31/2013 (PI)
The Trustees of Princeton University John Templeton Fdn

Yr Title Project-Sub Proj Pubs
Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Faculty can login to make corrections and additions.

  1. McAuliffe K, Warneken F, Blake P. Children's Sense of Fairness: Respect Isn't Everything. Trends Cogn Sci. 2019 Jun 11. PMID: 31285105.
  2. Davoodi T, Soley G, Harris PL, Blake PR. Essentialization of Social Categories Across Development in Two Cultures. Child Dev. 2019 Jan 15. PMID: 30644543.
  3. Chernyak N, Harvey T, Tarullo AR, Rockers PC, Blake PR. Varieties of Young Children's Prosocial Behavior in Zambia: The Role of Cognitive Ability, Wealth, and Inequality Beliefs. Front Psychol. 2018; 9:2209.View Related Profiles. PMID: 30505288; DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2018.02209;.
  4. Davoodi T, Nelson LJ, Blake PR. Children's Conceptions of Ownership for Self and Other: Categorical Ownership Versus Strength of Claim. Child Dev. 2018 Oct 15. PMID: 30320431.
  5. Kajanus A, McAuliffe K, Warneken F, Blake PR. Children's fairness in two Chinese schools: A combined ethnographic and experimental study. J Exp Child Psychol. 2019 Jan; 177:282-296. PMID: 30274706.
  6. Ronfard S, Nelson L, Dunham Y, Blake PR. How children use accuracy information to infer informant intentions and to make reward decisions. J Exp Child Psychol. 2019 Jan; 177:100-118. PMID: 30172198.
  7. Corbit J, McAuliffe K, Callaghan TC, Blake PR, Warneken F. Children's collaboration induces fairness rather than generosity. Cognition. 2017 11; 168:344-356. PMID: 28797935.
  8. Blake PR. Giving what one should: explanations for the knowledge-behavior gap for altruistic giving. Curr Opin Psychol. 2018 04; 20:1-5. PMID: 28822896.
  9. Harvey T, Davoodi T, Blake PR. Young children will lie to prevent a moral transgression. J Exp Child Psychol. 2018 Jan; 165:51-65. PMID: 28735681.
  10. Blake PR, Corbit J, Callaghan TC, Warneken F. Give as I give: Adult influence on children's giving in two cultures. J Exp Child Psychol. 2016 Dec; 152:149-160. PMID: 27552298; DOI: 10.1016/j.jecp.2016.07.010;.
Showing 10 of 27 results. Show More

This graph shows the total number of publications by year, by first, middle/unknown, or last author.

Bar chart showing 27 publications over 12 distinct years, with a maximum of 4 publications in 2018

Contact for Mentoring:

64 Cummington St
Boston MA 02215
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