individual based models

Cultural stability without copying

What causes cultural stability? Culture can be studied as an evolving system, and the comparison between biological and cultural evolution has inspired a productive research agenda in which cultural stability is commonly attributed to the existence …

Copy-the-majority of instances or individuals? Two approaches to the majority and their consequences for conformist decision-making

Cultural evolution is the product of the psychological mechanisms that underlie individual decision making. One commonly studied learning mechanism is a disproportionate preference for majority opinions, known as conformist transmission. While most …

Reply to ‘Sigmoidal Acquisition Curves are Good Indicators of Conformist Transmission’

In the Smaldino et al. study ‘Sigmoidal Acquisition Curves are Good Indicators of Conformist Transmission’, our original findings regarding the conditional validity of using population-level sigmoidal acquisition curves as means to evidence …

Role of Neutral evolution in word turnover during centuries of English word popularity

Here, we test Neutral models against the evolution of English word frequency and vocabulary at the corpus scale, as recorded in annual word frequencies from three centuries of English lan- guage books. Against these data, we test both static and …

A reappreciation of “conformity”

Conformity cannot be identified based on population-level signatures

Conformist transmission, defined as a disproportionate likelihood to copy the majority, is considered a potent mechanism underlying the emergence and stabilization of cultural diversity. However, ambiguity within and across disciplines remains as to …

The role of redundant information in cultural transmission and cultural stabilization

Redundant copying has been proposed as a manner to achieve the high-fidelity necessary to pass on and preserve complex traits in human cultural transmission. There are at least 2 ways to define redundant copying. One refers to the possibility of …

Biases in cultural transmission shape the turnover of popular traits

The neutral model of cultural evolution, which assumes that copying is unbiased, provides precise predictions regarding frequency distributions of traits and the turnover within a popularity-ranked list. Here we study turnover in ranked lists and …

Regulatory traits: Cultural Influences on Cultural Evolution

We use the term *regulatory traits* to indicate traits that both regulate cultural transmission (e.g., from whom to learn) and are themselves culturally transmitted. In the first part of this contribution we study the dynamics of some of these traits …

Old and Young Individuals’ Role in Cultural Change

We explore the impact of age on cultural change through simulations of cultural evolution. Our simulations show that common observations about the relationship between old and young naturally emerge from repeated cultural learning. In particular, …