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Damian Ruck (PhD, Bristol University, U.K.) joined the Department of Anthropology this fall as a postdoctoral scholar and will also be member of the NIMBioS DySoc group. Dr. Ruck uses large historical data sets to measure social and cultural change across cultures and nations over historical time. Dr. Ruck’s new research, published with Alex Bentley and Daniel Lawson this summer in
Science Advances, measures the importance of religion in 109 countries spanning the entire 20th century has reignited an age-old debate around the link between secularization and economic growth.
The study, showing that a decline in religion influences a country’s future economic prosperity, received prominent media coverage this summer, including the front page of Britain’s leading newspaper,
Sociology, Univ. of Tennessee, Knoxville). Dr. Dahms is the Co-Director, Center for the Study of Social Justice, UTK,
Co-Chair, Committee on Social Theory, UTK
, Editor of
Current Perspectives in Social Theory,
Director, International Social Theory Consortium (ISTC), and Affiliated Faculty, University of Innsbruck (Austria).
Dr. Dahms research interests are in economic sociology, political economy, and comparative sociology.
EEB/Math 681. Evolution of human distinctiveness: a review of ideas and mathematical models.
Instructor: Sergey Gavrilets
CRN: 43210, Section #1, 3 credit hours
Place: Ayres 122/ Claxton 103
The goal of the course is to expand on the material presented in introductory courses on mathematical modeling in biological, social and cultural evolution to gain a better understanding and appreciation of the rapidly developing theoretical research focusing on human social behavior.
The list of topics to be covered:
1. Are humans a “uniquely unique species”?
3. Egalitarian preferences and fairness
4. Cognitive abilities
9. Learning and cultural evolution
10. Social norms
11. Social institutions and social complexity
For each topic, we will use at least 3 class periods to:
-Review ideas and data,
-Go through an earlier/classical model,
-Go through a more recent model,
-Critique and discuss possible generalizations of models.
No tests/exams but a significant amount of reading. Student-led discussions. A possibility for a project and/or publication.