Director: Ronnie Swartz

The Altruistic Behavior Institute (aka the Altruistic Personality and Prosocial Behavior Institute) was founded in 1982 by Drs. Samuel and Pearl Oliner, who recognized the need for more research into the areas of altruism and prosocial behavior. The Institute’s purpose is to seek out ways to enhance altruism and prosocial behavior in society. Dr. Pearl Oliner (1931-2021) was a Professor of Education at Cal Poly Humboldt in Arcata, California. Dr. Samuel P. Oliner (1930-2021) was a native of Poland, a Holocaust survivor, and a Professor of Sociology at Cal Poly Humboldt.

The Oliner Altruism Research Archive makes original data on apology and forgiveness, love and compassion, moral exemplars, and heroism available to the world, including rare recordings of interviews with Holocaust Rescuers. These data and narratives offer significant contributions to present day studies. The recordings of Holocaust Rescuers also add an ineffable element to humanity’s stories of suffering and resilience.

Generous support for the Oliner Altruism Research Archive has been provided by the Cal Poly Humboldt Office of Research and Sponsored Programs and the Oliner Family. Humboldt students Warren Horrocks, Katie Miller, Phoebe Peterman, and Jesse Morales assisted in the development of the archive.

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Browse the Oliner Altruism Research Archive Collections:

Apology and Forgiveness Survey

Holocaust Rescuers Interviews

Moral Exemplars Study

Survey of Experiences During the Holocaust