Skip to main content

Laying the foundation for evonomics

  • David Sloan Wilson (a1)

The target article is a major step toward integrating the biological and human-related sciences. It is highly relevant to economics and public policy formulation in the real world, in addition to its basic scientific import. My commentary covers a number of points, including avoiding an excessively narrow focus on agriculture, the importance of multilevel selection and complex systems theory, and utopic versus dystopic scenarios for the future.

Hide All
Acemoglu, D. & Robinson, J. (2012) Why nations fail: The origins of power, prosperity, and poverty. Crown.
Dobzhansky, T. (1973) Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution. American Biology Teacher 35:125–29.
Hölldobler, B. & Wilson, E. O. (2008) The superorganisms: The beauty, elegance, and strangeness of insect societies. W. W. Norton. [Original Hardcover edition]
Okasha, S. (2006) Evolution and the levels of selection. Oxford University Press.
Pickett, K. & Wilkinson, J. B. (2009) The spirit level: Why greater equality makes societies stronger. Bloomsbury Press.
Rawls, J. (1971) A theory of justice. Harvard University Press.
Turner, V. (1969) The ritual process. Aldine de Gruyter.
van Veelen, M., García, J., Sabelis, M. W. & Egas, M. (2012) Group selection and inclusive fitness are not equivalent; the Price equation vs. models and statistics. Journal of Theoretical Biology 299:6480. Available at:
Wilson, D. S. (2015a) Challenge to kin selectionists: Explain this! This View of Life. (Online article). Available at:
Wilson, D. S. (2015b) Does altruism exist? Culture, genes, and the welfare of others. Yale University Press.
Wilson, D. S. & Gowdy, J. M. (2013) Evolution as a general theoretical framework for economics and public policy. Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization 90 (Suppl.):S3S10. Available at:
Wilson, D. S. & Gowdy, J. M. (2015) Human ultrasociality and the invisible hand: Foundational developments in evolutionary science alter a foundational concept in economics. Journal of Bioeconomics 17(1):3752. Available at:;014-;9192-x
Wilson, D. S., Hayes, S. C., Biglan, A. & Embry, D. D. (2014) Evolving the future: Toward a science of intentional change. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 37(4):395460. doi: 10.1017/S0140525X13001593.
Yaworsky, W., Horowitz, M. & Kickham, K. (2014) Gender and politics among anthropologists in the units of selection debate. Biological Theory 10(2):145–55. Available at:
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Behavioral and Brain Sciences
  • ISSN: 0140-525X
  • EISSN: 1469-1825
  • URL: /core/journals/behavioral-and-brain-sciences
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *


Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed