The theory that we can only hold a finite number of stable social relationships has long been debated.
That number, estimated to be 150 by anthropologist Robin Dunbar, has created a widespread belief that the brain has a cognitive limit to the size of social groups it maintains.
Is there a cognitive limit to the number of connections we can navigate?
It’s a question that’s inherently complicated, looking at human brain physiology and human evolution (and we haven’t even gotten to the practical implications of technology and digital social networks).
Technology could mean that maintaining stable relationships is easier than ever. Or, the tsunami of networking potential could tip the scales in the other direction. Let’s analyze how Dunbar’s number stacks up in the modern era.