John Tooby received his Ph.D from Harvard University in 1989 and is currently Professor of Anthropology at the University of California, Santa Barbara. For the last two decades, Tooby and his collaborators have been

integrating cognitive science, cultural anthropology, evolutionary

biology, paleoanthropology, cognitive neuroscience, and hunter-gatherer

studies to create the new field of evolutionary psychology.

The goal of evolutionary psychology is the progressive mapping of the

universal evolved cognitive and neural architecture that constitutes

human nature, and provides the basis of the learning mechanisms

responsible for culture. This involves using knowledge of specific

adaptive problems our hunter-gatherer ancestors encountered to

experimentally map the design of the cognitive and emotional mechanisms

that evolved among our hominid ancestors to solve them. Tooby is

co-director of UCSB's Center for Evolutionary Psychology,

where Tooby and his collaborators use cross-cultural, experimental, and

neuroscience techniques to investigate specific cognitive

specializations for cooperation, coalitions, group psychology, and human

reasoning. Under Tooby's direction, the Center maintains a field

station in Ecuadorian Amazonia in order to conduct cross-cultural

studies of psychological adaptations and human behavioral ecology. He is

particularly interested in documenting how the design of these

adaptations shapes cultural and social phenomena, and potentially forms

the foundation for a new, more precise generation of social and cultural

theories. Tooby is also working on several projects in evolutionary

biology, including a book on the evolution of sexual reproduction and

genetic systems that interprets their design features as a series of

adaptations to parasitic infections.