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We humans are so social, that we can hardly be independent of others because of social learning - our disposition for imitating behavior and communication.
In relation to decision making and problem solving, most of us are influenced to some degree by other people, whether it's about entertainment or politics. Because want to know what others think before we make a decision.
If we simply imitate other people without connecting what we see to our own experience, any idea, good or bad, can spread.
Striking the right balance between copying others and relying on personal experience is key. It's the only way social learning can improve decision making.
Humans are not the only animals to display collective intelligence. Bees are also well known for their ability to make accurate collective decisions when they search for foods or new nests.
And bees can even avoid maladaptive herding: they prevent bad information from amplifying and spreading, although they copy each other through communication and social learning.
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