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A Science of Human Nature?

Philosophical Disputes at the Interface of Natural and Social Science

Andrew Buskell

PhD Student



I hold previous degrees in Psychology (University of Alberta) and Philosophy (University of Edinburgh). My current research focuses on the work of anthropologists like Peter Richerson, Robert Boyd, Joseph Henrich, and Dan Sperber who construct and analyse formal models to explain the functioning and describe the evolutionary history of psychological mechanisms underpinning cultural transmission. I question the reasoning that leads these thinkers to posit mechanisms of a specific form, and ask whether there is room in their evolutionary reasoning and formal models for a more diverse range of mechanistic implementations, perhaps in line with the research programme of extended cognition.







  • Buskell, A. 'Heidegger and Cultural Evolution', Conventionalism: Heidegger’s 'Anyone' and Contemporary Social Theory, University of Vienna, 5 December 2014.


  • Buskell, A. 'The Evolutionary Social Sciences and Cultural Evolution', Spindel Conference, University of Memphis, 24 October 2014.


  • Buskell, A. ‘The Prospects for Darwinian Imperialism’, HPS Philosophy Workshop, Cambridge, 7 March 2014.


  • Buskell, A. 'The Prospects for Darwinian Imperialism', iCog Cognitive Science Conference, Sheffield, 1 December 2013.


  • Buskell, A. ‘Bringing up the Bodies: Psychology and Embodiment in the 20th Century', Cabinet of Natural History, Cambridge, 25 November 2013.


  • Buskell, A. ‘Expertise, Extension, Evolution’, International Society for the History, Philosophy, and Social Studies of Science 2013, Montpellier, 10 July 2013.


  • Buskell, A. ‘The Psychological Mechanisms of Cultural Selection’, Sperber Week, Institut Jean Nicod, 11 December 2012.