Learning, evolvability and exploratory behaviour: extending the evolutionary reach of learning

Biology and Philosophy 28 (6):933-955 (2013)
Abstract
Traditional accounts of the role of learning in evolution have concentrated upon its capacity as a source of fitness to individuals. In this paper I use a case study from invasive species biology—the role of conditioned taste aversion in mitigating the impact of cane toads on the native species of Northern Australia—to highlight a role for learning beyond this—as a source of evolvability to populations. This has two benefits. First, it highlights an otherwise under-appreciated role for learning in evolution that does not rely on social learning as an inheritance channel nor “special” evolutionary processes such as genetic accommodation (both of which many are skeptical about). Second, and more significantly, it makes clear important and interesting parallels between learning and exploratory behaviour in development. These parallels motivate the applicability of results from existing research into learning and learning evolution to our understanding of the evolution of evolvability more generally
Keywords Evolvability  Learning  Plasticity  Behaviour  Facilitated variation  Evo-devo  Evolution  culture  traditions
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/s10539-013-9396-9
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
Edit this record
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Mark as duplicate
Request removal from index
Revision history
Download options
Our Archive
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA
What Evolvability Really Is.Rachael L. Brown - 2013 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science (3):axt014.
The Question of Animal Culture.Bennett G. Galef - 1992 - Human Nature 3 (2):157-178.

View all 6 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
What Evolvability Really Is.Rachael L. Brown - 2013 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science (3):axt014.
Conceptual Learning: The Priority for Higher Education.Effie Maclellan - 2005 - British Journal of Educational Studies 53 (2):129 - 147.
A Single-Process Learning Theory.Marion Blute - 2001 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 24 (3):529-531.
Social Learning and Teaching in Chimpanzees.Richard Moore - 2013 - Biology and Philosophy 28 (6):879-901.
Implicit Learning of (Boundedly) Rational Behaviour.Daniel John Zizzo - 2000 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 23 (5):700-701.
Is Evolvability Evolvable?Massimo Pigliucci - 2008 - Nature Reviews Genetics 9:75-82.
Is Culture Inherited Through Social Learning?Kenneth Reisman - 2007 - Biological Theory 2 (3):300-306.
Added to PP index
2013-08-03

Total downloads
265 ( #13,230 of 2,200,741 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
12 ( #16,752 of 2,200,741 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads
My notes
Sign in to use this feature