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Journal Article

Evolutionary decomposition and the mechanisms of cultural change

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Beheim, B. A., & Baldini, R. (2012). Evolutionary decomposition and the mechanisms of cultural change. Cliodynamics: The Journal of Theoretical and Mathematical History, 3(2), 217-233.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-002D-FF51-2
Beginning with the Price equation, recent work has developed the method of evolutionary decomposition, an exact partitioning of mean phenotypic change into underlying demographic processes. We present a method of evolutionary decomposition for human cultural change, and a demonstration of this method on three centuries of half-decadal census records collected from a simulated island population. By decomposing phenotypic trajectories, we can develop and evaluate suitable hypotheses of the driving mechanisms of cultural evolution.