Lecture by Carel van Schaik: The Evolution of General Intelligence

On Monday 6 November, 17.00-19.00, Eugene Dubois Chairholder Prof. Carel van Schaik will give a lecture on The Evolution of General Intelligence at Maastricht University.


Recent work has shown that general intelligence is not limited to humans but also found in many animals. Between-species variation in general intelligence is tightly linked to brain size. Brains have two peculiarities that affect the evolution of intelligence. First, they are energetically expensive, so the ecological ability to sustain larger brains constrained the evolution of intelligence. Second, brains must be trained before they are useful. Thus, species that can rely on social inputs during development that make skill learning more efficient are more likely to evolve larger brains. These two principles also apply to human evolution.

Location: Maastricht University, Randwijck Campus, Universiteitssingel 40, Maastrichtzaal
Organised in collaboration with Studium Generale, Maastricht University.