Short CV/Education and training

  • 1993
    BSc Zoology (1st class), University Of Nottingham

  • 1994
    MSc Biological Anthropology (with Distinction), University College London

  • 2001
    Diploma in Statistics (with Distinction), University College London

  • 2001
    PhD Anthropology, University College London

  • 2001
    Visiting fellow, Laboratory of Survival & Longevity, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany

  • 2002
    ESRC postdoctoral fellow Department of Anthropology, University College London

  • 2002 – 2008
    Lecturer in Population Studies, Department of Social Policy, London School of Economics

  • 2008 – 2010
    Senior Lecturer in Population Studies, Department of Social Policy, London School of Economics

  • 2010 – 2012
    Reader in Evolutionary Anthropology, Department of Anthropology, Durham University

  • Since 2012
    Reader in Population & Health, Department of Population Studies, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine

Selected publications

  • Sear, R. & Coall, D. (2011) How much does family matter? The implications of a cooperative breeding strategy for the demographic transition. Population and Development Review 37 (s1): 81-112

  • Sear, R. & Marlowe, F. (2009) How universal are human mate choices? Size doesn't matter when Hadza foragers are choosing a mate. Biology Letters 5: 606-609

  • Sear, R. (2008) Kin and child survival in Malawi: are matrilineal kin always beneficial in a matrilineal society? Human Nature 19(3): 277-293

  • Sear, R. & Mace, R. (2008) Who keeps children alive? A review of the effects of kin on child survival. Evolution & Human Behavior 29(1): 1-18

  • Sear, R. (2007) The impact of reproduction on Gambian women: does controlling for phenotypic quality reveal costs of reproduction? American Journal of Physical Anthropology 132(4): 632-641

  • Sear, R. (2006) Height and reproductive success: how a Gambian population compares to the West. Human Nature 17(4): 405-418

  • Sear, R., Mace, R. & McGregor, I.A. (2003) The effects of kin on female fertility in rural Gambia. Evolution & Human Behavior 24(1): 25-42

  • Holden, C.J., Sear, R. & Mace, R. (2003) Matriliny as daughter-biased investment. Evolution & Human Behavior 24(2): 99-112

  • Sear, R., Mace, R., Shanley, D & McGregor, I.A. (2001) The fitness of twin mothers: evidence from rural Gambia. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 14(3): 433-443

  • Sear, R., Mace, R. & McGregor, I.A. (2000) Maternal grandmothers improve the nutritional status and survival of children in rural Gambia. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London, Series B 267(1453): 1641-1647


Membership in scientific bodies/juries

Professional memberships

  • European Human Behaviour and Evolution Association: founder member & Vice President, 2008 – 2012

  • British Society for Population Studies: Council member 2003 – 2009 & Honorary Secretary 2005 – 2009

  • The Galton Institute: Officer of the Council since 2004, Webmaster & Chair of Grant-Awarding Committee

  • European Association for Population Studies

  • Human Behavior and Evolution Society

  • International Union for the Scientific Study of Population

  • International Society for Behavioural Ecology

Editorial Boards & Reviewing

  • On Editorial Boards of Globalisation & Health, PLoS ONE

  • On Editorial Advisory Boards of Human Nature, Evolution & Human Behavior, Graduate Journal of Social Sciences,

  • Past member of Editorial Board of Journal of Evolutionary Psychology, 2007 – 2011

  • Guest Editor for special issues of American Journal of Human Biology and Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B

  • Reviewer for (journals): Aging Cell, American Anthropologist, American Journal of Human Biology, American Journal of Physical Anthropology, Behavioral Ecology, Behaviour, Behavioral and Brain Sciences, Biology Letters, Current Anthropology, Demography, Economics & Human Biology, Evolution & Human Behavior, Field Methods, Human Nature, Journal of Anthropological Sciences, Journal of Ethology, PLoS Medicine, Population and Development Review, Population Space and Place, Population Studies, Journal of Biosocial Science, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, Proceedings of the Royal Society Series B, Personality and Individual Differences, Psychological Review, Social Biology

  • Reviewer for (publishers): Cambridge University Press, Harvard University Press, Princeton University Press, Wiley-Blackwell

  • Reviewer for (funding bodies): ESRC, Leakey Foundation, Leverhulme Trust

  • Member of the Assessor College for ESRC Grants

  • Judge for 2011 Human Behaviour and Evolution Society New Investigator award

Additional qualifications

Conference organisation

  • Co-organised British Society for Population Studies (BSPS) workshop, 15-17 July 2009, Cambridge, on "Fertility declines in the past, present and future"

  • Co-organised International Union for the Scientific Study of Population workshop, 23-25 July 2008, Bristol, on "Trade-offs in female life histories"

  • Founder member of the European Human Behaviour and Evolution conferences (now re-launched as the European Human Behaviour and Evolution Association: http://www.ehbea.com/)

  • Co-organiser and local host of the European Human Behaviour and Evolution conference at LSE, 28-30 March 2007

  • Organised Evolutionary Demography strand at the 2005 BSPS Conference

  • Developed and organised new strand at 2003 BSPS Conference on Evolutionary Demography


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