Paul Zak has authored a series of papers showing that oxytocin, a hormone released when you're hugging can make people more generous. He can inject people with it, and make them more generous, and find that those with more oxytocin are more generous. He finds that hugging releases oxytocins and encourages hugging in the work place, and follows this practice in the day and fray. The studies seem to be very biased and inconclusive. What is your view of this chicanery or unusual ant like behavior?

Kim Zussman writes: 

Volatility is a collective hug.

Daniel Grossman writes: 

It probably generates more of that hormone if you have sex with everyone you want to be generous with.

Laurel Kenner writes: 

When the Chair and I visited NYU to give a presentation several years ago, the president approached. He started to give Vic a bear hug. Vic stopped him. "You don't need to bother — I've lost all my money." The president looked him over carefully and then said, "I'll hug you anyway."

We later learned that such presidential hugs are often distributed to potential donors to NYU. It is of course immeasurable how much this technique has contributed to the rapid expansion of NYU's campus under his reign, and the question of whether oxytocin is involved is one for the biochemists. I merely note the president's name — Sexton — and speculate in innocent wonderment whether particularly well-endowed dowagers come in for particularly vivacious oxytocin production.

The Chair further speculates that since he had in fact not at that time lost all his money, that oxytocin may have predictive qualities.

Leo Jia adds: 

It has been widely debated that the Chinese rich are not generous at all. One strong evidence is that the philanthropic dinner meeting with the Chinese rich hosted by Gates and Buffett received little response. So, the very tradition that Chinese don't hug plays a big role. It was a pity that Gates and Buffett didn't give them big hugs at the meeting.


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