Skip to main page content
Access keys NCBI Homepage MyNCBI Homepage Main Content Main Navigation
, 26 (3), 353-369

The Growth of Developmental Thought: Implications for a New Evolutionary Psychology


The Growth of Developmental Thought: Implications for a New Evolutionary Psychology

Robert Lickliter. New Ideas Psychol.


Evolution has come to be increasingly discussed in terms of changes in developmental processes rather than simply in terms of changes in gene frequencies. This shift is based in large part on the recognition that since all phenotypic traits arise during ontogeny as products of individual development, a primary basis for evolutionary change must be variations in the patterns and processes of development. Further, the products of development are epigenetic, not just genetic, and this is the case even when considering the evolutionary process. These insights have led investigators to reconsider the established notion of genes as the primary cause of development, opening the door to research programs focused on identifying how genetic and non-genetic factors coact to guide and constrain the process of development and its outcomes. I explore this growth of developmental thought and its implications for the achievement of a unified theory of heredity, development, and evolution and consider its implications for the realization of a new, developmentally-based evolutionary psychology.

Similar articles

  • Probabilistic Epigenesis
    G Gottlieb. Dev Sci 10 (1), 1-11. PMID 17181692. - Review
    The notion that phenotypic traits, including behavior, can be predetermined has slowly given way in biology and psychology over the last two decades. This shift in thinki …
  • [Foundations of the New Phylogenetics]
    IIa Pavlinov. Zh Obshch Biol 65 (4), 334-66. PMID 15490579.
    Evolutionary idea is the core of the modern biology. Due to this, phylogenetics dealing with historical reconstructions in biology takes a priority position among biologi …
  • Developmental Evolution
    R Lickliter. Wiley Interdiscip Rev Cogn Sci 8 (1-2). PMID 27906523. - Review
    Biologists and psychologists are re-thinking the long-standing premise of genes as the primary cause of development, a view widely embraced in 20th-century biology. This …
  • Précis of Evolution in Four Dimensions
    E Jablonka et al. Behav Brain Sci 30 (4), 353-65; discusssion 365-89. PMID 18081952.
    In his theory of evolution, Darwin recognized that the conditions of life play a role in the generation of hereditary variations, as well as in their selection. However, …
  • On Evolutionary Causes and Evolutionary Processes
    KN Laland. Behav Processes 117, 97-104. PMID 24932898.
    In this essay I consider how biologists understand 'causation' and 'evolutionary process', drawing attention to some idiosyncrasies in the use of these terms. I suggest t …
See all similar articles

Cited by 3 PubMed Central articles

LinkOut - more resources