When local causes are more explanatorily useful


Madole and Harden plead for better integration of causal knowledge of different depths to understand complex human traits. Classically, local causes—a particular type of shallow causes—are considered less useful than more generalisable causes, giving a false impression that the latter causes are more useful and desirable. Using a simple example, I show that sometimes the contrary is true.

Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 45, e185.
Pierrick Bourrat
Pierrick Bourrat
Senior Lecturer & DECRA Fellow

My research interests include the various concepts deployed in evolutionary theory, causation, and the interplay between biological and cultural evolution.