Connair Russell

LIFE Berlin

External LIFE Fellow since 2018, MPI for Human Development, Berlin

I am a pre-doctoral fellow in the Max Planck Research Group “Naturalistic Social Cognition.” I gained undergraduate and master’s degrees in psychology, and then completed an internship here at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development before starting my PhD in October 2017. In the broadest theoretical sense, I am interested in the evolution of cognition and how it might be functionally specialised, with a particular focus on learning. My research encompasses a range of theoretical perspectives—cognitive, developmental, and comparative psychology, anthropology, evolutionary biology, and cognitive science—and will use methods from developmental psychology to examine learning and induction biases in infancy, early childhood, and adulthood. Specifically, I am examining how certain categories and content are more readily associable than others, and if there is equity in categorical inductive reasoning and generalization. I am testing experimentally whether different types of information such as danger are more readily associated with certain categories, and if they are more or less widely extrapolated to other objects.


Russell, C. J. S. & Muthukrishna, M. (2018). Dual inheritance theory. In T. Shackelford & V. Weekes-Shackelford (Eds.), Encyclopedia of evolutionary psychological science. Cham: Springer.

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