Recent Posts

Academic and academic-adjacent jobs increasingly require having a Twitter account. Here how to start.

The International Cognition & Culture Institute organised a book club around “Cultural evolution in the digital age”.

Cultural evolution models should integrate network models - and viceversa.

Pop song lyrics became sadder in the last fifty years. Is it because sadder genres become more popular?

Lyrics of contemporary pop songs are sadder than old ballads.

Recent Publications

While culture is widespread in the animal kingdom, human culture has been claimed to be special due to being cumulative. It is …

Assessing the impact of conservation campaigns is of high importance for optimizing the use of limited resources. Lists of threatened …

From emails to social media, from instant messaging to political memes, the way we produce and transmit culture is radically changing. …

Popular music offers a rich source of data that provides insights into long-term cultural evolutionary dynamics. One major trend in …

What is fiction about, and what is it good for? An influential family of theories sees fiction as rooted in adaptive simulation …

Recent & Upcoming Talks

Cultural evolution - a byword for evolutionary and cognitive approaches to human culture - can provide a useful framework to understand …

In my talk, I will discuss how cultural evolution-a byword for evolutionary and cognitive approaches to human culture-can provide a …

In recent years, researchers from many disciplines have included the concept of culture among their explicatory tools. While this is a …

The spread of online misinformation has gained mainstream attention in recent years and it is often touted as one of the biggest threat …

Selected media


Heaven knows pop’s miserable now

The Times covers our research on cultural evolution of emotions in song lyrics.

Tout ce que vous pensiez savoir d’Internet est (sans doute) faux

An excellent review (in french) of Cultural Evolution in the Digital Age.

Why are pop songs getting sadder than they used to be?

A piece for Aeon on my research on the cultural evolution of emotion in pop song lyrics.

How digital’s defining culture

Press release of Brunel University for the publication of Cultural Evolution in the Digital Age.

Les vraies raisons du succès des infox

An article on my research on cognitive attraction and misinformation (in french).

Perché le fake news ci attraggono? Un contributo dall’antropologia cognitiva ed evoluzionistica

A summary of my research on cognitive attraction and misinformation (in italian).

Dedicated Followers (After a Fashion)

I have been interviewed by a marketing magazine about fake followers and similar. I am sceptical about their effects.

The Trouble with Cultural Evolution

Philosopher Massmio Pigliucci discusses our If we are all cultural darwinians, what is the fuss about? on Plato’s Footnotes.

How much is that doggie from the movie?

The New York Times reports on our research on the effect of movies on dog breeds popularity.

The Lassie effect. Movies drive our preference for certain dog breeds

Our paper on how movies impact on dog breeds popularity is featured in Science.

Why hard times make for miserable books

CNN on our Books average previous decade of economic misery.

Information is power

An interview (in italian) with Radio3 Scienza (I start around min. 18). Click to download the podcast.

Literature gloom mirrors economic misery, study finds

The Guardian reports on our research on economy and emotions in books.

The History of Our Emotions in Millions of Books

I wrote a piece for the Huffington Post on our paper on emotions in 20th century books.

Text mining uncovers British reserve and US emotion

Nature features our paper The expression of emotions in 20th century books.

Aiuto, i nostri romanzi hanno perso le emozioni

Our research on emotions in 20th century books featured by la Repubblica (in italian).

Planck, Elusive Giant Squid, Emotive words

I have been interviewed by Adam Rutherford for BBC4 Material world on our research on emotions in 20th century books.


Here is my CV.