Explaining group-level traits requires distinguishing process from product

Karthik Panchanathan, Sarah Mathew, Charles Perreault

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Smaldino is right to argue that we need a richer theory of grouplevel traits. He is wrong, however, in limiting group-level traits to units of cultural selection, which require explanations based on group selection. Traits are best understood when explanations focus on both process (i.e., selection) and product (i.e., adaptation). This approach can distinguish group-level traits that arise through within-group processes from those that arise through between-group processes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)269-270
Number of pages2
JournalBehavioral and Brain Sciences
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Physiology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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