The Evolutionary Dynamics of Religion, Family Size, and Child Success

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Description: Offspring number, in modern environments, is inversely related to child success, yet children born to religious parents often flourish. Understanding how this occurs is of critical importance because it can show how religion impacts core biological processes. This Templeton funded project uses cross-cultural data from over 6,000 participants to test hypotheses about how religion influences reproductive decision-making and child success across cultures.

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Across the world religious people have more children than their secular counterparts. Offspring number, in modern environments, is inversely related to child success, yet children born to religious parents often flourish. Currently we have little understanding of how religion impacts the number of children people have or their children’s outcomes, and why these dynamics vary across religious gro...

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