Biology and Philosophy 28 (4):577-592 (2013)

Authors
Hayley Clatterbuck
University of Wisconsin, Madison
Elliott Sober
University of Wisconsin, Madison
Abstract
The probability that the fitter of two alleles will increase in frequency in a population goes up as the product of N (the effective population size) and s (the selection coefficient) increases. Discovering the distribution of values for this product across different alleles in different populations is a very important biological task. However, biologists often use the product Ns to define a different concept; they say that drift “dominates” selection or that drift is “stronger than” selection when Ns is much smaller than some threshold quantity (e.g., ½) and that the reverse is true when Ns is much larger than that threshold. We argue that the question of whether drift dominates selection for a single allele in a single population makes no sense. Selection and drift are causes of evolution, but there is no fact of the matter as to which cause is stronger in the evolution of any given allele
Keywords Causal strength  Drift  Evolution  Neutrality  Selection
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DOI 10.1007/s10539-013-9374-2
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References found in this work BETA

Evolution and the Levels of Selection.Samir Okasha - 2006 - Oxford University Press.
Evolution and the Levels of Selection.Samir Okasha - 2009 - Critica 41 (123):162-170.
The Analysis of Variance and the Analysis of Causes.Richard C. Lewontin - 1974 - American Journal of Human Genetics 26 (3):400-11.

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Citations of this work BETA

Drift Beyond Wright–Fisher.Hayley Clatterbuck - 2015 - Synthese 192 (11):3487-3507.

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