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Encephalization and division of labor by early humans

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  • John Hartwick

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Abstract

We draw on Ricardian comparative advantage between distinct persons to map out the division of labor among proto-humans in a village some 1.7 million years ago. A person specialized in maintaining a cooking fire in the village is of particular interest (Ofek [2001]). We are also interested in modelling hunting by village males in teams. The large issue is whether and how specialization (division of labor) and interpersonal trade might have driven brain-expansion in early humans.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s10818-010-9086-5
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Springer in its journal Journal of Bioeconomics.

Volume (Year): 12 (2010)
Issue (Month): 2 (July)
Pages: 77-100

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Handle: RePEc:kap:jbioec:v:12:y:2010:i:2:p:77-100

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Web page: http://www.springerlink.com/link.asp?id=103315

Related research

Keywords: Early humans; Division of labor; Brain expansion; Z130; O100;

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  1. David Harper, 2008. "A bioeconomic study of numeracy and economic calculation," Journal of Bioeconomics, Springer, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 101-126, August.
  2. Greif, Avner, 1989. "Reputation and Coalitions in Medieval Trade: Evidence on the Maghribi Traders," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 49(04), pages 857-882, December.
  3. Alexander Field, 2008. "Why multilevel selection matters," Journal of Bioeconomics, Springer, Springer, vol. 10(3), pages 203-238, December.
  4. Thomas Dohmen & Armin Falk & David Huffman & Uwe Sunde, 2009. "The Intergenerational Transmission of Attitudes," CESifo DICE Report, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 7(1), pages 8-12, 04.
  5. Alberto Battistini & Ugo Pagano, 2008. "Primates’ fertilization systems and the evolution of the human brain," Journal of Bioeconomics, Springer, Springer, vol. 10(1), pages 1-21, April.
  6. Theodore C. Bergstrom, 2002. "Evolution of Social Behavior: Individual and Group Selection," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 16(2), pages 67-88, Spring.
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Cited by:
  1. John M. Hartwick, 2009. "Son to Father Reciprocity and Encephalization in Early Humans," Working Papers, Queen's University, Department of Economics 1223, Queen's University, Department of Economics.

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