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  1. Decoupling, Commingling, and the Evolutionary Significance of Experiential Niche Construction.Lynn Chiu - forthcoming - In Tobias Uller & Kevin Laland (eds.), Evolutionary Causation: Biological and Philosophical Reflections. pp. 299-322.
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  2. Niche Construction, Too, Unifies Praxis and Symbolization.Chris Sinha - forthcoming - Language and Cognition.
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  3. Historical and Philosophical Perspectives on the Study of Developmental Bias.Ingo Brigandt - 2020 - Evolution & Development 22 (1-2):7-19.
    Throughout the recent history of research at the intersection of evolution and development, notions such as developmental constraint, evolutionary novelty, and evolvability have been prominent, but the term ‘developmental bias’ has scarcely been used. And one may even doubt whether a unique and principled definition of bias is possible. I argue that the concept of developmental bias can still play a vital scientific role by means of setting an explanatory agenda that motivates investigation and guides the formulation of integrative explanatory (...)
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  4. Narrative Niche Construction: Memory Ecologies and Distributed Narrative Identities.Richard Heersmink - 2020 - Biology and Philosophy 35 (5):1-23.
    Memories of our personal past are the building blocks of our narrative identity. So, when we depend on objects and other people to remember and construct our personal past, our narrative identity is distributed across our embodied brains and an ecology of environmental resources. This paper uses a cognitive niche construction approach to conceptualise how we engineer our memory ecology and construct our distributed narrative identities. It does so by identifying three types of niche construction processes that govern how we (...)
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  5. Evolutionary Causation: Biological and Philosophical Reflections. Vienna Series in Theoretical Biology Edited by Tobias Uller and Kevin N. Laland. [REVIEW]Charles H. Pence - 2020 - The Quarterly Review of Biology 95 (2):150-151.
  6. Reciprocal Causation and the Extended Evolutionary Synthesis.Andrew Buskell - 2019 - Biological Theory 14 (4):267-279.
    Kevin Laland and colleagues have put forward a number of arguments motivating an extended evolutionary synthesis. Here I examine Laland et al.'s central concept of reciprocal causation. Reciprocal causation features in many arguments supporting an expanded evolutionary framework, yet few of these arguments are clearly delineated. Here I clarify the concept and make explicit three arguments in which it features. I identify where skeptics can—and are—pushing back against these arguments, and highlight what I see as the empirical, explanatory, and methodological (...)
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  7. Engineering Affect: Emotion Regulation, the Internet, and the Techno-Social Niche.Joel Krueger & Lucy Osler - 2019 - Philosophical Topics 47 (2):205-231.
    Philosophical work exploring the relation between cognition and the Internet is now an active area of research. Some adopt an externalist framework, arguing that the Internet should be seen as environmental scaffolding that drives and shapes cognition. However, despite growing interest in this topic, little attention has been paid to how the Internet influences our affective life — our moods, emotions, and our ability to regulate these and other feeling states. We argue that the Internet scaffolds not only cognition but (...)
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  8. Editorial: Affectivity Beyond the Skin.Giovanna Colombetti, Joel Krueger & Tom Roberts - 2018 - Frontiers in Psychology 9:1-2.
  9. A Variational Approach to Niche Construction.Axel Constant, Maxwell Ramstead, Samuel Veissière, John Campbell & Karl Friston - 2018 - Journals of the Royal Society Interface 15:1-14.
    In evolutionary biology, niche construction is sometimes described as a genuine evolutionary process whereby organisms, through their activities and regulatory mechanisms, modify their environment such as to steer their own evolutionary trajectory, and that of other species. There is ongoing debate, however, on the extent to which niche construction ought to be considered a bona fide evolutionary force, on a par with natural selection. Recent formulations of the variational free-energy principle as applied to the life sciences describe the properties of (...)
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  10. Hierarchy Theory of Evolution and the Extended Evolutionary Synthesis: Some Epistemic Bridges, Some Conceptual Rifts.Alejandro Fábregas-Tejeda & Francisco Vergara-Silva - 2018 - Evolutionary Biology 45 (2):127-139.
    Contemporary evolutionary biology comprises a plural landscape of multiple co-existent conceptual frameworks and strenuous voices that disagree on the nature and scope of evolutionary theory. Since the mid-eighties, some of these conceptual frameworks have denounced the ontologies of the Modern Synthesis and of the updated Standard Theory of Evolution as unfinished or even flawed. In this paper, we analyze and compare two of those conceptual frameworks, namely Niles Eldredge’s Hierarchy Theory of Evolution (with its extended ontology of evolutionary entities) and (...)
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  11. Affective Affordances and Psychopathology.Joel Krueger & Giovanna Colombetti - 2018 - Discipline Filosofiche 2 (18):221-247.
    Self-disorders in depression and schizophrenia have been the focus of much recent work in phenomenological psychopathology. But little has been said about the role the material environment plays in shaping the affective character of these disorders. In this paper, we argue that enjoying reliable (i.e., trustworthy) access to the things and spaces around us — the constituents of our material environment — is crucial for our ability to stabilize and regulate our affective life on a day-today basis. These things and (...)
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  12. Cognitive Integration How Culture Transforms Us and Extends Our Cognitive Capabilities.Richard Menary - 2018 - In Shaun Gallagher, Albert Newen & Leon De Bruin (eds.), Oxford Handbook of 4E Cognition. Oxford: Oford University press. pp. 187-215.
    Cognitive integration is a contribution to the embodied, embedded, and extended cognition movement in philosophy and cognitive science and the extended synthesis movement in evolutionary biology— particularly cultural evolution and niche construction. It is a framework for understanding and studying cognition and the mind that draws on several sources: empirical research in embodied cognition, arguments for extended cognition, distributed cognition, niche construction and cultural inheritance, developmental psychology, social learning, and cognitive neuroscience. Its uniqueness rests in its ability to account for (...)
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  13. Theoretical Considerations on Cognitive Niche Construction.Tommaso Bertolotti & Lorenzo Magnani - 2017 - Synthese 194 (12):4757-4779.
    Cognitive niche theories consist in a theoretical framework that is proving extremely profitable in bridging evolutionary biology, philosophy, cognitive science, and anthropology by offering an inter-disciplinary ground, laden with novel approaches and debates. At the same time, cognitive niche theories are multiple, and differently related to niche theories in theoretical and evolutionary biology. The aim of this paper is to clarify the theoretical and epistemological relationships between cognitive and ecological niche theories. Also, by adopting a constructionist approach we will try (...)
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  14. Application of the Eco-Field and General Theory of Resources to Bark Beetles: Beyond the Niche Construction Theory.F. J. Sánchez-García, V. Machado, J. Galián & D. Gallego - 2017 - Biosemiotics 10 (1):57-73.
    A new approach to landscape ecology involves the application of the eco-field hypothesis and the General Theory of Resources. In this study, we describe the putative eco-field of bark beetles as a spatial configuration with a specific meaning-carrier for every organism-resource interaction. Bark beetles are insects with key roles in matter and energy cycles in coniferous forests, which cause significant changes to forestry landscapes when outbreaks occur. Bark beetles are guided towards host trees by the recognition of semiotic signals using (...)
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  15. Articulating the World: Conceptual Understanding and the Scientific Image. [REVIEW]Kevin Temple - 2017 - Graduate Faculty Philosophy Journal 38 (2):502-505.
  16. Cultural Longevity: Morin on Cultural Lineages. [REVIEW]Andrew Buskell - 2016 - Biology and Philosophy 31 (3):435-446.
    Morin has written a rich and valuable book. Its main aim is to isolate the factors involved in maintaining behavioural lineages over time, and to understand how these factors might interact. In doing so, it takes issue with the abstract and idealised models and arguments of dual-inheritance theorists, which are alleged in this account to rely on an overly simplistic notion of imitative learning. Morin’s book is full of ethnographic, anthropological, and psychological research, and there is much to commend in (...)
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  17. Bioeconomics, Biopolitics and Bioethics: Evolutionary Semantics of Evolutionary Risk (Anthropological Essay).V. T. Cheshko - 2016 - Bioeconomics and Ecobiopolitic (1 (2)).
    Attempt of trans-disciplinary analysis of the evolutionary value of bioethics is realized. Currently, there are High Tech schemes for management and control of genetic, socio-cultural and mental evolution of Homo sapiens (NBIC, High Hume, etc.). The biological, socio-cultural and technological factors are included in the fabric of modern theories and technologies of social and political control and manipulation. However, the basic philosophical and ideological systems of modern civilization formed mainly in the 17–18 centuries and are experiencing ever-increasing and destabilizing risk-taking (...)
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  18. Сo-evolutionary biosemantics of evolutionary risk at technogenic civilization: Hiroshima, Chernobyl – Fukushima and further….Valentin Cheshko & Valery Glazko - 2016 - International Journal of Environmental Problems 3 (1):14-25.
    From Chernobyl to Fukushima, it became clear that the technology is a system evolutionary factor, and the consequences of man-made disasters, as the actualization of risk related to changes in the social heredity (cultural transmission) elements. The uniqueness of the human phenomenon is a characteristic of the system arising out of the nonlinear interaction of biological, cultural and techno-rationalistic adaptive modules. Distribution emerging adaptive innovation within each module is in accordance with the two algorithms that are characterized by the dominance (...)
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  19. Which Evolutionary Model Best Explains the Culture of Honour?Stefan Linquist - 2016 - Biology and Philosophy 31 (2):213-235.
    The culture of honour hypothesis offers a compelling example of how human psychology differentially adapts to pastoral and horticultural environments. However, there is disagreement over whether this pattern is best explained by a memetic, evolutionary psychological, dual inheritance, or niche construction model. I argue that this disagreement stems from two shortcomings: lack of clarity about the theoretical commitments of these models and inadequate comparative data for testing them. To resolve the first problem, I offer a theoretical framework for deriving competing (...)
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  20. Social Niche Construction and Evolutionary Transitions in Individuality.P. A. Ryan, S. T. Powers & R. A. Watson - 2016 - Biology and Philosophy 31 (1):59-79.
    Social evolution theory conventionally takes an externalist explanatory stance, treating observed cooperation as explanandum and the positive assortment of cooperative behaviour as explanans. We ask how the circumstances bringing about this positive assortment arose in the first place. Rather than merely push the explanatory problem back a step, we move from an externalist to an interactionist explanatory stance, in the spirit of Lewontin and the Niche Construction theorists. We develop a theory of ‘social niche construction’ in which we consider biological (...)
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  21. Evolutionary Debunking Arguments and the Moral Niche.Eleonora Severini - 2016 - Philosophia 44 (3):865-875.
    The so-called Evolutionary Debunking Arguments are arguments that appeal to the evolutionary genealogy of our beliefs to undermine their justification. When applied to morality, such arguments are intended to undermine moral realism. In this paper I will discuss Andreas Mogensen’s recent effort to secure moral realism against EDAs. Mogensen attempts to undermine the challenge provided by EDAs in metaethics through the distinction between proximate and ultimate causes in biology. The problem with this move is that the proximate/ultimate distinction is misconceived. (...)
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  22. Niche Construction Theory as an Explanatory Framework for Human Phenomena.Efraim Wallach - 2016 - Synthese 193 (8).
    Niche Construction Theory has been gaining acceptance as an explanatory framework for processes in biological and human evolution. Human cultural niche construction, in particular, is suggested as a basis for understanding many phenomena that involve human genetic and cultural evolution. Herein I assess the ability of the cultural niche construction framework to meet this explanatory role by looking into several NCT-inspired accounts that have been offered for two important episodes of human evolution, and by examining the contribution of NCT to (...)
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  23. Three Kinds of Constructionism: The Role of Metaphor in the Debate Over Niche Constructionism.Emanuele Archetti - 2015 - Biological Theory 10 (2):103-115.
    Throughout the years a lively debate has flourished around niche construction theory. A source of contention has been the distinction between narrow and broad construction activities proposed by critics. Narrow construction is limited to the production of evolutionarily advantageous artifacts while broad construction refers to construction activities that have an impact on the ecosystem but offer little or negative adaptive feedback to the organisms. The first has been acknowledged as relevant to evolutionary studies in that it increases species’ fitness and (...)
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  24. Digitalizing the Religious Niche.Tommaso Bertolotti - 2015 - In Patterns of Rationality. Springer Verlag.
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  25. Gossip as Multi-Level Abduction: The Inferential Ground of Linguistic Niche Construction.Tommaso Bertolotti - 2015 - In Patterns of Rationality. Springer Verlag.
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  26. Niche Construction Through Gossip and Mobbing: The Mediation of Violence in Technocognitive Niches.Tommaso Bertolotti - 2015 - In Patterns of Rationality. Springer Verlag.
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  27. The Birth of the Holobiont: Multi-Species Birthing Through Mutual Scaffolding and Niche Construction.Lynn Chiu & Scott F. Gilbert - 2015 - Biosemiotics 8 (2):191-210.
    Holobionts are multicellular eukaryotes with multiple species of persistent symbionts. They are not individuals in the genetic sense— composed of and regulated by the same genome—but they are anatomical, physiological, developmental, immunological, and evolutionary units, evolved from a shared relationship between different species. We argue that many of the interactions between human and microbiota symbionts and the reproductive process of a new holobiont are best understood as instances of reciprocal scaffolding of developmental processes and mutual construction of developmental, ecological, and (...)
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  28. Scaffoldings of the Affective Mind.Giovanna Colombetti & Joel Krueger - 2015 - Philosophical Psychology 28 (8):1157-1176.
    In this paper we adopt Sterelny's framework of the scaffolded mind, and his related dimensional approach, to highlight the many ways in which human affectivity is environmentally supported. After discussing the relationship between the scaffolded-mind view and related frameworks, such as the extended-mind view, we illustrate the many ways in which our affective states are environmentally supported by items of material culture, other people, and their interplay. To do so, we draw on empirical evidence from various disciplines, and develop phenomenological (...)
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  29. Cancer Ecology: Niche Construction, Keystone Species, Ecological Succession, and Ergodic Theory.Irina Kareva - 2015 - Biological Theory 10 (4):283-288.
    Parallels between cancer and ecological systems have been increasingly recognized and extensively reviewed. However, a more unified framework of understanding cancer as an evolving dynamical system that undergoes a sequence of interconnected changes over time, from a dormant microtumor to disseminated metastatic disease, still needs to be developed. Here, we focus on several examples of such mechanisms, namely, how in cancer niche construction a metabolic adaptation and consequent change to the tumor microenvironment becomes an important factor in evasion of the (...)
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  30. Erratum To: Three Kinds of Constructionism: The Role of Metaphor in the Debate Over Niche Constructionism.Isabella Sarto-Jackson & Richard R. Nelson - 2015 - Biological Theory 10 (3):281-281.
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  31. Intrinsic Estimates of Fitness Affect the Causal Structure of Evolutionary Change.J. H. van Hateren - 2015 - Biology and Philosophy 30 (5):729-746.
    The causal structure of Darwinian evolution by natural selection is investigated. Its basic scheme is reproduction resulting from a feedback loop driven by internal and external causes. Causation internal to the loop connects genotype, development, phenotype, and fitness, with environmental constraints on the latter preventing runaway reproduction. External causes driving the core loop are environmental change and genetic change. This basic causal structure is complicated by modern additions such as control of mutation rate, niche construction, interactions between evolution and development, (...)
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  32. Entangled Life: Organism and Environment in the Biological and Social Sciences.Gillian Barker, Eric Desjardins & Trevor Pearce (eds.) - 2014 - Springer.
    Despite the burgeoning interest in new and more complex accounts of the organism-environment dyad by biologists and philosophers, little attention has been paid in the resulting discussions to the history of these ideas and to their deployment in disciplines outside biology—especially in the social sciences. Even in biology and philosophy, there is a lack of detailed conceptual models of the organism-environment relationship. This volume is designed to fill these lacunae by providing the first multidisciplinary discussion of the topic of organism-environment (...)
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  33. Are Humans Adaptive for the God Niche? An Argument From Mathematics.Nicola Hoggard Creegan - 2014 - Philosophy, Theology and the Sciences 1 (2):232.
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  34. The Priority of the Individual in Cultural Inheritance.Taylor Davis & Eric Margolis - 2014 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 37 (3):257-258.
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  35. Emotions and the Social Niche.Joel Krueger - 2014 - In Christian von Scheve & Mikko Salmela (eds.), Collective Emotions. Oxford University Press. pp. 156-171.
  36. Inferring Coevolution.Ehud Lamm & Ohad Kammar - 2014 - Philosophy of Science 81 (4):592-611.
    We discuss two inference patterns for inferring the coevolution of two characters based on their properties at a single point in time and determine when developmental interactions can be used to deduce evolutionary order. We discuss the use of the inference patterns we present in the biological literature and assess the arguments’ validity, the degree of support they give to the evolutionary conclusion, how they can be corroborated with empirical evidence, and to what extent they suggest new empirically addressable questions. (...)
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  37. Cultural Replication and Microbial Evolution.Bence Nanay - 2014 - In Gergely Csibra (ed.), Naturalistic Approaches to Culture. Akademiai.
    The aim of this paper is to argue that cultural evolution is in many ways much more similar to microbial than to macrobial biological evolution. As a result, we are better off using microbial evolution as the model of cultural evolution. And this shift from macrobial to microbial entails adjusting the theoretical models we can use for explaining cultural evolution.
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  38. Niche Construction is an Important Component of a Science of Intentional Change.Michael J. O'Brien - 2014 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 37 (4):432-433.
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  39. Ecological Models for Gene Therapy. II. Niche Construction, Nongenetic Inheritance, and Ecosystem Perturbations.Arnaud Pocheville, Maël Montévil & Régis Ferrière - 2014 - Biological Theory 9 (4):414-422.
    In this paper, we apply the perspective of intra-organismal ecology by investigating a family of ecological models suitable to describe a gene therapy to a particular metabolic disorder, the adenosine deaminase deficiency (ADA-SCID). The gene therapy is modeled as the prospective ecological invasion of an organ (here, bone marrow) by genetically modified stem cells, which then operate niche construction in the cellular environment by releasing an enzyme they synthesize. We show that depending on the chosen order (a choice that cannot (...)
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  40. Niche Construction, Adaptive Preferences, and the Differences Between Fitness and Utility.Armin W. Schulz - 2014 - Biology and Philosophy 29 (3):315-335.
    A number of scholars have recently defended the claim that there is a close connection between the evolutionary biological notion of fitness and the economic notion of utility: both are said to refer to an organism’s success in dealing with its environment, and both are said to play the same theoretical roles in their respective sciences. However, an analysis of two seemingly disparate but in fact structurally related phenomena—‘niche construction’ (the case where organisms change their environment to make it fit (...)
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  41. The Cultural Evolution of Emergent Group-Level Traits.Paul E. Smaldino - 2014 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 37 (3):243-254.
    Many of the most important properties of human groups – including properties that may give one group an evolutionary advantage over another – are properly defined only at the level of group organization. Yet at present, most work on the evolution of culture has focused solely on the transmission of individual-level traits. I propose a conceptual extension of the theory of cultural evolution, particularly related to the evolutionary competition between cultural groups. The key concept in this extension is the emergent (...)
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  42. Integrating Ecology and Evolution: Niche Construction and Ecological Engineering.Gillian Barker & John Odling-Smee - 2013 - In Gillian Barker, Eric Desjardins & Trevor Pearce (eds.), Entangled Life: Organism and Environment in the Biological and Social Sciences. Springer. pp. 187-211.
  43. Darwinism Extended: A Survey of How the Idea of Cultural Evolution Evolved.Chris Buskes - 2013 - Philosophia 41 (3):661-691.
    In the past 150 years there have been many attempts to draw parallels between cultural and biological evolution. Most of these attempts were flawed due to lack of knowledge and false ideas about evolution. In recent decades these shortcomings have been cleared away, thus triggering a renewed interest in the subject. This paper offers a critical survey of the main issues and arguments in that discussion. The paper starts with an explication of the Darwinian algorithm of evolution. It is argued (...)
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  44. August - 48. The phenomenon of "proletarian science".Cheshko Valentin Glazko Valery (ed.) - 2013 - Publishing house "NEFTiGAZ".
    The book is an attempt to comparative system the study of the genesis of the phenomenon of politicized science - primarily in an example of the so-called "Soviet genetics and creative Darwinism". As thehe authors conclude a these phenomenon is reflect the specific character of the competition between schools and scientific groups in community in a totalitarian social environment and is an extreme manifestation of the processes of interaction tions between science, society, politics, typical to any society any political organization.
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  45. More on How and Why: Cause and Effect in Biology Revisited.Kevin N. Laland, John Odling-Smee, William Hoppitt & Tobias Uller - 2013 - Biology and Philosophy 28 (5):719-745.
    In 1961, Ernst Mayr published a highly influential article on the nature of causation in biology, in which he distinguished between proximate and ultimate causes. Mayr argued that proximate causes (e.g. physiological factors) and ultimate causes (e.g. natural selection) addressed distinct ‘how’ and ‘why’ questions and were not competing alternatives. That distinction retains explanatory value today. However, the adoption of Mayr’s heuristic led to the widespread belief that ontogenetic processes are irrelevant to evolutionary questions, a belief that has (1) hindered (...)
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  46. Is Non-Genetic Inheritance Just a Proximate Mechanism? A Corroboration of the Extended Evolutionary Synthesis.Alex Mesoudi, Simon Blanchet, Anne Charmantier, Étienne Danchin, Laurel Fogarty, Eva Jablonka, Kevin N. Laland, Thomas J. H. Morgan, Gerd B. Müller, F. John Odling-Smee & Benoît Pujol - 2013 - Biological Theory 7 (3):189-195.
    What role does non-genetic inheritance play in evolution? In recent work we have independently and collectively argued that the existence and scope of non-genetic inheritance systems, including epigenetic inheritance, niche construction/ecological inheritance, and cultural inheritance—alongside certain other theory revisions—necessitates an extension to the neo-Darwinian Modern Synthesis (MS) in the form of an Extended Evolutionary Synthesis (EES). However, this argument has been challenged on the grounds that non-genetic inheritance systems are exclusively proximate mechanisms that serve the ultimate function of calibrating organisms (...)
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  47. Causal Mechanisms of Evolution and the Capacity for Niche Construction.Ward B. Watt - 2013 - Biology and Philosophy 28 (5):757-766.
    Ernst Mayr proposed a distinction between “proximate”, mechanistic, and “ultimate”, evolutionary, causes of biological phenomena. This dichotomy has influenced the thinking of many biologists, but it is increasingly perceived as impeding modern studies of evolutionary processes, including study of “niche construction” in which organisms alter their environments in ways supportive of their evolutionary success. Some still find value for this dichotomy in its separation of answers to “how?” versus “why?”questions about evolution. But “why is A?” questions about evolution necessarily take (...)
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  48. Spreading Order: Religion, Cooperative Niche Construction, and Risky Coordination Problems.Joseph Bulbulia - 2012 - Biology and Philosophy 27 (1):1-27.
    Adaptationists explain the evolution of religion from the cooperative effects of religious commitments, but which cooperation problem does religion evolve to solve? I focus on a class of symmetrical coordination problems for which there are two pure Nash equilibriums: (1) ALL COOPERATE, which is efficient but relies on full cooperation; (2) ALL DEFECT, which is inefficient but pays regardless of what others choose. Formal and experimental studies reveal that for such risky coordination problems, only the defection equilibrium is evolutionarily stable. (...)
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  49. Population Thinking and Natural Selection in Dual-Inheritance Theory.Wybo Houkes - 2012 - Biology and Philosophy 27 (3):401-417.
    A deflationary perspective on theories of cultural evolution, in particular dual-inheritance theory, has recently been proposed by Lewens. On this ‘pop-culture’ analysis, dual-inheritance theorists apply population thinking to cultural phenomena, without claiming that cultural items evolve by natural selection. This paper argues against this pop-culture analysis of dual-inheritance theory. First, it focuses on recent dual-inheritance models of specific patterns of cultural change. These models exemplify population thinking without a commitment to natural selection of cultural items. There are grounds, however, for (...)
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  50. Thinking Tools: Acquired Skills, Cultural Niche Construction, and Thinking with Things.Ben Jeffares - 2012 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 35 (4):228-229.
    The investigative strategy that Vaesen uses presumes that cognitive skills are to some extent hardwired; developmentally plastic traits would not provide the relevant comparative information. But recent views of cognition that stress external resources, and evolutionary accounts such as cultural niche construction, urge us to think carefully about the role of technology in shaping cognition.
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