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Coevolution of intelligence, behavioral repertoire, and lifespan
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Brooklyn College, USA.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Zoology. Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Zoology. Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution.
2014 (English)In: Theoretical Population Biology, ISSN 0040-5809, E-ISSN 1096-0325, Vol. 91, 44-49 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Across many taxa, intriguing positive correlations exist between intelligence (measured by proxy as encephalization), behavioral repertoire size, and lifespan. Here we argue, through a simple theoretical model, that such correlations arise from selection pressures for efficient learning of behavior sequences. We define intelligence operationally as the ability to disregard unrewarding behavior sequences, without trying them out, in the search for rewarding sequences. We show that increasing a species' behavioral repertoire increases the number of rewarding behavior sequences that can be performed, but also the time required to learn such sequences. This trade-off results in an optimal repertoire size that decreases rapidly with increasing sequence length. Behavioral repertoire size can be increased by increasing intelligence or lengthening the lifespan, giving rise to the observed correlations between these traits.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. Vol. 91, 44-49 p.
Keyword [en]
Evolution of intelligence, Evolution of behavioral repertoire, Evolution of lifespan, Mathematical model
National Category
Genetics Environmental Sciences Ecology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-100649DOI: 10.1016/j.tpb.2013.09.005ISI: 000329887200005OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-100649DiVA: diva2:696342
Note

AuthorCount:3;

Available from: 2014-02-13 Created: 2014-02-10 Last updated: 2017-12-06Bibliographically approved

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Ghirlanda, StefanoEnquist, MagnusLind, Johan
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Centre for the Study of Cultural EvolutionDepartment of Zoology
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