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Culture, space, and metapopulation: a simulation-based study for evaluating signals of blending and branching

Crema, ER; Kerig, T; Shennan, S; (2014) Culture, space, and metapopulation: a simulation-based study for evaluating signals of blending and branching. JOURNAL OF ARCHAEOLOGICAL SCIENCE , 43 289 - 298. 10.1016/j.jas.2014.01.002. Green open access

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Abstract

This paper explores the robustness of phylogenetic methods for detecting variations in branching and blending signals in the archaeological record. Both processes can generate a spatial structure whereby cultural similarity between different sites decays with increasing spatial distance. By generating a series of artificial records through the controlled and parameterised environment of an agent-based simulation, we: a) illustrate the weakness and the strength of different analytical techniques (empirical distogram, Mantel test, Retention Index, and d-score); b) determine whether they are capable of assessing how spatial isolation determines cultural diversity; and c) establish whether they can detect variations in the nature of horizontal transmission over time. Results suggest that variables other than the spatial range of interaction (e.g. the frequency of fission events, population dynamics, and rates of cultural innovation) have different effects on the output of some phylogenetic analyses.

Type: Article
Title: Culture, space, and metapopulation: a simulation-based study for evaluating signals of blending and branching
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.jas.2014.01.002
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2014.01.002
Additional information: �© 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Keywords: Cultural interaction, Branching vs. blending, Phylogenetic analysis, Agent-based simulation
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of SandHS > Institute of Archaeology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of SandHS > Institute of Archaeology > Institute of Archaeology Gordon Square
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1421580
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