We study the evolutionary interplay between humans and their environments to understand how this dynamic process gave rise to our complex biology; how it made us such a diverse species; and how it impacts our health and wellbeing. We are particularly interested in how genes and cultures co-evolve to shape personalities, cognitive styles and social behaviour. This evolutionary perspective provides novel insights into how human diversity affects health, welfare and human potential.
We apply genetic, genomic, bioinformatics, evolutionary and epidemiological approaches to addressing these research questions. The work is underpinned by a substantial collection of genetic samples from human and other primate species, including from large, longitudinal population-based cohorts linked to extensive health, life history, psychometric and neuroimaging data, and by a state-of-the-art biomolecular resource facility. We are able to take advantage of ANU’s exceptional multidisciplinary research environment, working closely with clinicians, epidemiologists, neuroscientists, psychologists, bioinformaticians and molecular geneticists. We also collaborate with researchers from a wide range of disciplines to explore the societal implications of our work.