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Chimpanzees copy dominant and knowledgeable individuals: implications for cultural diversity

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Chimpanzees copy dominant and knowledgeable individuals : implications for cultural diversity. / Kendal, R.; Hopper, L.M.; Whiten, A.; Brosnan, S.F.; Lambeth, S.P.; Schapiro, S.J.; Hoppitt, W.

In: Evolution and Human Behavior, Vol. 36, No. 1, 01.2015, p. 65-72.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Kendal, R, Hopper, LM, Whiten, A, Brosnan, SF, Lambeth, SP, Schapiro, SJ & Hoppitt, W 2015, 'Chimpanzees copy dominant and knowledgeable individuals: implications for cultural diversity' Evolution and Human Behavior, vol 36, no. 1, pp. 65-72. DOI: 10.1016/j.evolhumbehav.2014.09.002

APA

Kendal, R., Hopper, L. M., Whiten, A., Brosnan, S. F., Lambeth, S. P., Schapiro, S. J., & Hoppitt, W. (2015). Chimpanzees copy dominant and knowledgeable individuals: implications for cultural diversity. Evolution and Human Behavior, 36(1), 65-72. DOI: 10.1016/j.evolhumbehav.2014.09.002

Vancouver

Kendal R, Hopper LM, Whiten A, Brosnan SF, Lambeth SP, Schapiro SJ et al. Chimpanzees copy dominant and knowledgeable individuals: implications for cultural diversity. Evolution and Human Behavior. 2015 Jan;36(1):65-72. Available from, DOI: 10.1016/j.evolhumbehav.2014.09.002

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Kendal, R.; Hopper, L.M.; Whiten, A.; Brosnan, S.F.; Lambeth, S.P.; Schapiro, S.J.; Hoppitt, W. / Chimpanzees copy dominant and knowledgeable individuals : implications for cultural diversity.

In: Evolution and Human Behavior, Vol. 36, No. 1, 01.2015, p. 65-72.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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@article{e3e20cfa82304e078cf8562c4131c323,
title = "Chimpanzees copy dominant and knowledgeable individuals: implications for cultural diversity",
abstract = "Evolutionary theory predicts that natural selection will fashion cognitive biases to guide when, and from whom, individuals acquire social information, but the precise nature of these biases, especially in ecologically valid group contexts, remains unknown. We exposed four captive groups of chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) to a novel extractive foraging device and, by fitting statistical models, isolated four simultaneously operating transmission biases. These include biases to copy (i) higher-ranking and (ii) expert individuals, and to copy others when (iii) uncertain or (iv) of low rank. High-ranking individuals were relatively un-strategic in their use of acquired knowledge, which, combined with the bias for others to observe them, may explain reports that high innovation rates (in juveniles and subordinates) do not generate a correspondingly high frequency of traditions in chimpanzees. Given the typically low rank of immigrants in chimpanzees, a 'copying dominants' bias may contribute to the observed maintenance of distinct cultural repertoires in neighboring communities despite sharing similar ecology and knowledgeable migrants. Thus, a copying dominants strategy may, as often proposed for conformist transmission, and perhaps in concert with it, restrict the accumulation of traditions within chimpanzee communities whilst maintaining cultural diversity.",
keywords = "Transmission biases, Social learning strategies, Chimpanzees, Culture, Cultural diversity",
author = "R. Kendal and L.M. Hopper and A. Whiten and S.F. Brosnan and S.P. Lambeth and S.J. Schapiro and W. Hoppitt",
note = "RLK was funded by a Royal Society Dorothy Hodgkin Fellowship; LMH by a BBSRC studentship (BBS/S/K/2004/11255 supervised by AW) and, at the time of writing, is funded by the Guthman Fund; WH by a BBSRC grant (BB/I007997/1); SFB by a NSF CAREER award (SES 0847351) and (SES 0729244). The chimpanzee colony is supported by NIH U42 (RR-15090).",
year = "2015",
month = "1",
doi = "10.1016/j.evolhumbehav.2014.09.002",
volume = "36",
pages = "65--72",
journal = "Evolution and Human Behavior",
issn = "1090-5138",
publisher = "Elsevier Inc.",
number = "1",

}

RIS (suitable for import to EndNote) - Download

TY - JOUR

T1 - Chimpanzees copy dominant and knowledgeable individuals

T2 - Evolution and Human Behavior

AU - Kendal,R.

AU - Hopper,L.M.

AU - Whiten,A.

AU - Brosnan,S.F.

AU - Lambeth,S.P.

AU - Schapiro,S.J.

AU - Hoppitt,W.

N1 - RLK was funded by a Royal Society Dorothy Hodgkin Fellowship; LMH by a BBSRC studentship (BBS/S/K/2004/11255 supervised by AW) and, at the time of writing, is funded by the Guthman Fund; WH by a BBSRC grant (BB/I007997/1); SFB by a NSF CAREER award (SES 0847351) and (SES 0729244). The chimpanzee colony is supported by NIH U42 (RR-15090).

PY - 2015/1

Y1 - 2015/1

N2 - Evolutionary theory predicts that natural selection will fashion cognitive biases to guide when, and from whom, individuals acquire social information, but the precise nature of these biases, especially in ecologically valid group contexts, remains unknown. We exposed four captive groups of chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) to a novel extractive foraging device and, by fitting statistical models, isolated four simultaneously operating transmission biases. These include biases to copy (i) higher-ranking and (ii) expert individuals, and to copy others when (iii) uncertain or (iv) of low rank. High-ranking individuals were relatively un-strategic in their use of acquired knowledge, which, combined with the bias for others to observe them, may explain reports that high innovation rates (in juveniles and subordinates) do not generate a correspondingly high frequency of traditions in chimpanzees. Given the typically low rank of immigrants in chimpanzees, a 'copying dominants' bias may contribute to the observed maintenance of distinct cultural repertoires in neighboring communities despite sharing similar ecology and knowledgeable migrants. Thus, a copying dominants strategy may, as often proposed for conformist transmission, and perhaps in concert with it, restrict the accumulation of traditions within chimpanzee communities whilst maintaining cultural diversity.

AB - Evolutionary theory predicts that natural selection will fashion cognitive biases to guide when, and from whom, individuals acquire social information, but the precise nature of these biases, especially in ecologically valid group contexts, remains unknown. We exposed four captive groups of chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) to a novel extractive foraging device and, by fitting statistical models, isolated four simultaneously operating transmission biases. These include biases to copy (i) higher-ranking and (ii) expert individuals, and to copy others when (iii) uncertain or (iv) of low rank. High-ranking individuals were relatively un-strategic in their use of acquired knowledge, which, combined with the bias for others to observe them, may explain reports that high innovation rates (in juveniles and subordinates) do not generate a correspondingly high frequency of traditions in chimpanzees. Given the typically low rank of immigrants in chimpanzees, a 'copying dominants' bias may contribute to the observed maintenance of distinct cultural repertoires in neighboring communities despite sharing similar ecology and knowledgeable migrants. Thus, a copying dominants strategy may, as often proposed for conformist transmission, and perhaps in concert with it, restrict the accumulation of traditions within chimpanzee communities whilst maintaining cultural diversity.

KW - Transmission biases

KW - Social learning strategies

KW - Chimpanzees

KW - Culture

KW - Cultural diversity

UR - http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S109051381400110X#s0075

U2 - 10.1016/j.evolhumbehav.2014.09.002

DO - 10.1016/j.evolhumbehav.2014.09.002

M3 - Article

VL - 36

SP - 65

EP - 72

JO - Evolution and Human Behavior

JF - Evolution and Human Behavior

SN - 1090-5138

IS - 1

ER -

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