Irrespective of the traits they study, social and behavioral scientists understand that no two people will express a given trait in exactly the same manner. Variation is the rule, and social and behavioral researchers try to uncover the reasons for those differences.
Historically, research in social and behavioral science has focused on environmental contributions to human variation, while biologists studied inherited variation in anatomy and physiology. Yet exciting newer research suggest that genes and environment participate in a complicated dynamic to influence not only health and disease, but also social and behavioral traits.
The nature/nurture debate has confounded research on social and behavioral phenotypes since the late nineteenth century. This program takes the position that the debate is unhelpful and misleading, because no gene operates outside of an environment - beginning with the environment of the cell and extending to the influences of the external world.