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Hunter-Gatherer Social Networks and Reproductive Success

Page, AE; Chaudhary, N; Viguier, S; Dyble, M; Thompson, J; Smith, D; Salali, GD; ... Migliano, AB; + view all (2017) Hunter-Gatherer Social Networks and Reproductive Success. Scientific Reports , 7 , Article 1153. 10.1038/s41598-017-01310-5. Green open access

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Individuals’ centrality in their social network (who they and their social ties are connected to) has been associated with fertility, longevity, disease and information transmission in a range of taxa. Here, we present the first exploration in humans of the relationship between reproductive success and different measures of network centrality of 39 Agta and 38 BaYaka mothers. We collected three-meter contact (‘proximity’) networks and reproductive histories to test the prediction that individual centrality is positively associated with reproductive fitness (number of living offspring). Rather than direct social ties influencing reproductive success, mothers with greater indirect centrality (i.e. centrality determined by second and third degree ties) produced significantly more living offspring. However, indirect centrality is also correlated with sickness in the Agta, suggesting a trade-off. In complex social species, the optimisation of individuals’ network position has important ramifications for fitness, potentially due to easy access to different parts of the network, facilitating cooperation and social influence in unpredictable ecologies.

Type: Article
Title: Hunter-Gatherer Social Networks and Reproductive Success
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1038/s41598-017-01310-5
Publisher version: http://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-017-01310-5
Language: English
Additional information: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.
Keywords: Science & Technology, Multidisciplinary Sciences, Science & Technology - Other Topics, CHILD SURVIVAL, CONTACT NETWORKS, AKA FORAGERS, BEHAVIOR, FITNESS, KIN, COOPERATION, PRIMATES, REVEAL, HEALTH
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of Anthropology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1555312
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