Tag Archives: cultural innovations

Partial connectivity increases cultural accumulation within groups

Complex technologies used in most human societies are beyond the inventive capacities of individuals. Instead, they result from a cumulative process in which innovations are gradually added to existing cultural traits across many generations. Recent work suggests that a population’s ability to develop complex … Continue reading

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The niche construction of cultural complexity

Interactions between innovations, population size, and the environment. Niche construction is a process through which organisms alter their environments and, in doing so, influence or change the selective pressures to which they are subject. ‘Cultural niche construction’ refers specifically to … Continue reading

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Evolution in Leaps: The punctuated Accumulation and Loss of Cultural Innovations

Archaeological accounts of cultural change reveal a fundamental conflict: Some suggest that change is gradual, accelerating over time, whereas others indicate that it is punctuated, with long periods of stasis interspersed by sudden gains or losses of multiple traits. Existing … Continue reading

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Culture, Genes, and the Human Revolution

Genetic evolution may have been driven by cultural innovations during the emergence of modern humans. State-of-the-art DNA sequencing is providing ever more detailed insights into the genomes of humans, extant apes, and even extinct hominins , offering unprecedented opportunities to … Continue reading

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