Recent Publications


Hruschka, D., Sear, R. & Hackman, J. (in press) Worldwide fertility declines do not rely on stopping at ideal family sizes. Population Studies

Hedges, S., Sear, R., Todd, J., Urassa, M., Lawson, D.W. (in press) Trade-offs in children’s time allocation: mixed support for embodied capital models of the demographic transition in Tanzania. Current Anthropology

Sear, R. (in press) Family and fertility: does kin help influence women’s fertility and how does this vary worldwide? Population Horizons

Coall, D., Hilbrand, S., Sear, R. & Hertwog, R. (in press) Interdisciplinary perspectives on grandparental investment: a journey towards causality. Contemporary Social Science


Lawson, D.W., Schaffnit, S.B., Hassan A., Ngadaya E., Ngowi B., Mfinanga S.G.M., James, S., & Borgerhoff Mulder M. (2017) Father Absence but Not Fosterage Predicts Food Insecurity, Relative Poverty, and Poor Child Health in Northern Tanzania. American Journal of Human Biology, 29, e22938

Brown, L. J., & Sear, R. (2017). Local environmental quality positively predicts breastfeeding in the UK’s Millennium Cohort Study. Evol Med Public Health, 2017(1), 120-135.

Sear, R., & Schaffnit, S. (2017). It’s not just about the future: The present payoffs to behavior vary in degree and kind between the rich and the poor. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 40. doi:10.1017/S0140525X1700111X [Commentary on Pepper & Nettle (2017) The behavioral constellation of deprivation: Causes and consequences.]

Schaffnit, S.B. & Sear R. (2017). Supportive families versus support from families: the decision to have a child in the Netherlands. ​Demographic Research, 37(14): 414-454. doi: 10.4054/DemRes.2017.37.14

Schaffnit, S.B. & Sear, R. (2017). Support for new mothers and the decision to have a second child in the United Kingdom: not all support is equal. Population Studies: 1-17. doi: 10.1080/00324728.2017.1349924

Wells, J.C.K., Nesse, R., Sear, R., Johnstone, R., Stearns, S. (2017) Evolutionary public health: introducing the concept. Lancet 390(10093): 500-509

Lawson, D.W., Núñez-de la Mora, A, Cooper, G.D., Prentice, A, Moore, S.E. & Sear, R. (2017) Marital status and sleeping arrangements predict salivary testosterone in rural Gambian men. Adaptive Human Behavior & Physiology


Hedges, Sophie, Monique Borgerhoff Mulder, Susan James, and David W. Lawson (2016) Sending Children to School: Rural Livelihoods and Parental Investment in Education in Northern Tanzania. Evolution and Human Behavior, 37 (2016), 142–51

Mattison, S., & Sear, R. (2016) Modernising evolutionary anthropology. Human Nature 27(4): 335-350.

Stulp, G., Sear, R., & Barrett, L. (2016). The Reproductive Ecology of Industrial Societies, Part I. Human Nature, 1–23.

Stulp, G., Sear, R., Schaffnit, S. B., Mills, M. C., & Barrett, L. (2016). The Reproductive Ecology of Industrial Societies, Part II. Human Nature.

Sheppard, P., Pearce, M. & Sear, R. (2016) How does childhood socioeconomic hardship affect reproductive strategy? Pathways of development. American Journal of Human Biology 28(3): 356-363

Sheppard, P. & Sear, R. (2016) Do grandparents compete with or support their grandchildren? In Guatemala, paternal grandmothers may compete, and maternal grandmothers may cooperate. Royal Society Open Science 3: 160069

Sear, R., Lawson, D. W., Kaplan, H., & Shenk, M. K. (2016). Understanding variation in human fertility : what can we learn from evolutionary demography ?, (March).

Snopkowski, K., & Sear, R. (2016). Does grandparental help mediate the relationship between kin presence and fertility? Demographic Research, 34(March), 467–498.

Moya, C., Snopkowski, K., & Sear, R. (2016). What men want: can men really benefit from higher fertility than is optimal for women? Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences, (APRIL).

Virgo, S., & Sear, R. (2016). Area-level mortality and morbidity predict “abortion proportion” in England and Wales. Evolution and Human Behavior, 37(5), 366–375.

Lawson, D. W., & Borgerhoff Mulder, M. (2016). The offspring quantity-quality trade-off and human fertility. Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci, 371.

Stulp, G., & Barrett, L. (2016). Wealth, fertility, and adaptive behaviour in industrial populations. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B-Biological Sciences, 371.

McAllister, L. S., Pepper, G. V., Virgo, S., & Coall, D. A. (2016). The evolved psychological mechanisms of fertility motivation: hunting for causation in a sea of correlation. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 371(1692), 20150151.

Coall, D. A., Tickner, M., McAllister, L. S., & Sheppard, P. (2016). Developmental influences on fertility decisions by women: an evolutionary perspective. Phil. Trans. R. Soc. B, 371(1692), 20150146.

Sear, R. (2016) Beyond the nuclear family: an evolutionary perspective on parenting. Current Opinion in Psychology. 7: 98-103


Sheppard, P., Garcia, J.R. & Sear, R. (2015) Childhood family disruption and adult height: is there a mediating role of puberty? Evolution Medicine and Public Health. 1: 332-342

Sear, R. (2015) Evolutionary contributions to the study of human fertility. Population Studies 69: S39-S55

Gibson MA & Lawson DW. 2015. Applying Evolutionary Anthropology. Evolutionary Anthropology: Issues, News, and Reviews. 24(1): 3-14.

Stulp, G., Barrett, L., Tropf, F.C. & Mills, M. (2015). Does natural selection favour taller stature among the tallest people on earth? Proceedings of the Royal Society B 282: 20150211

Stulp, G., Pollet, T.V. & Barrett, L. (2015). The not-always-uniquely-predictive power of an evolutionary approach to understanding our not-so-computational nature. Frontiers in Psychology 6: 1-4

Snopkowski, K. & Sear, R. (2015) Grandparental help in Indonesia is directed preferentially towards needier descendants: a potential confounder when exploring grandparental influences on child health? Social Science & Medicine 128: 105-114

Pollet, T.V., Stulp, G., Henzi, P. & Barrett, L. (2015). Taking the aggravation out of data aggregation: a conceptual guide to dealing with statistical issues related to the pooling of individual-level observational data. American Journal of Primatology 77(7): 727-740

Sear, R. (2015) Evolutionary Demography: A Darwinian Renaissance in Demography. International Encylcopedia of Social and Behavioural Sciences, 2nd ed. Elsevier

Stulp, G, Buunk, AP, Verhulst, S & Pollet, TV. (2015). Human height is positively related to interpersonal dominance in dyadic interactions. PLoS ONE 10(2): e0117860

Stulp, G. & Barrett, L. (2015). Evolutionary perspectives on human height variationBiological Reviews. 


Lawson DW, Borgerhoff Mulder M, Ghiselli ME, Ngadaya E, Ngowi B, Mfinanga SGM, Hartwig K. & James S. Ethnicity and child health in northern Tanzania: Maasai pastoralists are disadvantaged compared to neighbouring ethnic groups. PLoS ONE 9(10): e110447

Pound N, Lawson DW, Penton-Voak I, Toma AM & Richmond R. Facial fluctuating asymmetry is not associated with childhood ill-health in a large British cohort study. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences.

Moya, C. & Sear, R. (2014) An intergenerational conflict model of age at first birth in humans. PeerJ 2:e512

Barrett, L., Pollet, T.V. & Stulp, G. (2014). From computers to cultivation: reconceptualizing evolutionary psychology. Frontiers in Psychology 5: 1-14.

Snopkowski, K, Moya, C. & Sear, R. (2014). A test of the intergenerational conflict model in Indonesia shows no evidence of earlier menopause in female-dispersing groups. Proceedings of the Royal Society: B

Schaffnit, S.B. & Sear, R. (2014). Wealth modifies relationships between kin and women’s fertility in high-income countriesBehavioral Ecology 25: 834-842

Moya, C. & Scelza, B. (in press). The effect of recent ethnogenesis and migration histories on perceptions of ethnic group stability. Journal of Cognition and Culture.

Sheppard, P.J., Snopkowski, K. & Sear, R. (2014) Father absence and reproduction-related outcomes in Malaysia, a transitional fertility population. Human Nature 25: 213-234

Stulp, G. & Barrett, L. (2014). The course (of) (or) history of life? A response to “A life-course approach to fertility”. Demographic Research

Stulp, G., Mills, M., Pollet, T.V. & Barrett, L. (2014). Non-linear associations between stature and mate choice characteristics for American men and their spouses. American Journal of Human Biology 26:530–537.

Felisberti, F.M., & Sear, R. (2014) Postdoctoral researchers in the UK: a snapshot of factors affecting their research outputPLoS ONE 9(4): e93890

Lawson, D.W. & Uggla, C. (2014). Family structure and health in the developing world: what can evolutionary anthropology contribute to population health science? In Gibson M.A. & Lawson, D.W. (Eds) Applied Evolutionary Anthropology: Darwinian Approaches to Contemporary World Issues

Gibson, M.A. & Lawson, D.W. (2014) Applied Evolutionary Anthropology: Darwinian Perspectives on Contemporary World Issues. Springer

Sheppard, P.J., Garcia, J.R. & Sear, R. (2014) A Not-So-Grim Tale: How Childhood Family Structure Influences Reproductive and Risk-Taking Outcomes in a Historical U.S. PopulationPLoS ONE 9(3): e89539.

Sheppard, P.J., Schaffnit, S.B. Garcia, J.R. & Sear, R. (2014) Fostering relations: First sex and marital timings for children raised by kin and non-kin carersEvolution and Human Behavior 35(3): 161-168.


Alvergne, A., Lawson, D.W., Clarke, P.M.R., Gurmu, E. & Mace, R. Fertility, parental investment, and the early adoption of modern contraception in rural EthiopiaAmerican Journal of Human Biology 25:107-15.

Lawson D.W, Makoli A., Goodman A. Sibling configuration predicts individual and descendant socioeconomic success in a modern post-industrial society. PLoS ONE 8(9): e73698.

Mathews, P. & Sear, R. (2013) Family and fertility: kin influence on the progression to a second birth in the British Household Panel Study.  PLoS ONE 8(3): e56941

Mathews, P. & Sear, R. (2013) Does the kin orientation of a British female’s social network influence her entry into motherhood? Demographic Research 28(11): 313-340

Moya, C. (2013) Evolved priors for ethnolinguistic categorization: A case study from the Quechua-Aymara boundary in the Peruvian Altiplano Evolution and Human Behavior 34(4): 265-272.

Nettle, D., Gibson, M.A., Lawson, D. & Sear, R. (2013) Human behavioural ecology: current research and future prospects. Behavioural Ecology

Snopkowski, K. and R. Sear (2013) Kin influences on fertility in Thailand: Effects and Mechanisms.  Evolution and Human Behavior 34(2): 130-138.


Goodman, A., Koupil, I. & Lawson D.W. Low fertility increases descendant socioeconomic position but reduces long-term fitness in a modern post-industrial societyProceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 279: 4342-4351

 Lawson, D.W., Alvergne, A. & Gibson, M.A. The life-history trade-off between fertility and child survivalProceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 279: 4755-4764.

Sheppard, P.J. & Sear, R. (2012) Father absence predicts age at sexual maturity and reproductive timing in British men. Biology Letters 8(2): 237-240.


Publications since the inception of the EDG only, check individual researchers’ personal webpages for full publication lists