Michael Muthukrishna, Associate Professor of Economic Psychology at the London School of Economics, has a career which nicely demonstrates the way thinking about the Human Niche involves thinking “outside the box”.

Beginning in computer science, Professor Muthukrishna has gone on to look at our species through the prisms of neuroscience, anthropology, psychology, biology and archaeology. With an omnivorous interest in what exactly makes us human, human cultural evolution, religious history, and the application of science to policy, are all subjects that have come under his inquiring gaze. Our project host and coordinator Gray Richardson caught up with him earlier this year to talk through his approach to science, and his hopes for the future.

About Michael Muthukrishna

Michael Muthukrishna is Associate Professor of Economic Psychology at the London School of Economics. His research focuses on answering three broad questions: (1) Why are humans so different to other animals? (2) What are the psychological and evolutionary processes that underlie culture and social change, and how is information transmitted, maintained, and modified? (3) How can the answers to these questions be used to tackle some of the challenges we face as a species?

You can follow him on Twitter.


The Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History (MPI-SHH) in Jena was founded in 2014 to target fundamental questions of human history and evolution since the Paleolithic.