How developmental is evolutionary developmental biology?

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Evolutionary developmental biology (evo-devo) offers both an account of developmental process and also new integrative frameworks for analyzing interactions between development and evolution. Biologists and philosophers are keen on evo-devo in part because it appears to offer a comfort zone between, on the one hand, what some take to be the relative inability of mainstream evolutionary biology to integrate a developmental perspective; and, on the other hand, what some take to be more intractable syntheses of development and evolution. In this article, I outline core concerns of evo-devo, distinguish theoretical and practical variants, and counter Sterelny's recent argument that evo-devo's attention to development, while important, offers no significant, challenge to evolutionary theory as we know it.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)591-611
Number of pages21
JournalBiology and Philosophy
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Development
  • Epigenetics
  • Evolution
  • Neo-Darwinism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Philosophy
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • History and Philosophy of Science


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