Affiliative Behavior

Affiliative Behavior Sociology Definition


Affiliative behavior refers to any endeavor that builds or fosters social cohesion. The word affiliative behavior is widely used in academic discourse in anthropology, sociology, and psychology. However, it is only used to refer to behaviors that are likely to be perceived in a way that is attractive and appealing—for example, smiling, nodding, and waving some of the affiliate behavioral patterns.  Human relationships are facilitated through affiliation.


It is an action taken to promote or enhance one’s unity with others or is more closely associated with a desire to establish, maintain, and enhance intimate personal relationships with others.

The definition of affiliation is behavioral involvement in fruitful social relationships. Verbal and nonverbal actions encouraging productive social interaction are examples of affiliative social skills.

Any friendly and peaceful encounters between people with the goal of forming, preserving, or enforcing social ties are considered affiliative interactions.

The study of affiliative behaviors enables the determination of the degree of affiliation, affiliative connection, sociality index, and the formation of social relationships among group members.

Although they may be found in many species, affiliative behaviors are frequently associated with social contact and are more prevalent in mammals and birds. 

Individuals’ affiliative behaviors are influenced by various biological (age, sex), social (hierarchical status, kinship), hormonal, and environmental variables.


  1. A focus on the interaction partner
  2. Eye contact
  3. Good facial expressions
  4. The language that demonstrates warmth, attention, and care
  5. Smiling
  6. Nodding

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