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Biological Theory

, Volume 3, Issue 1, pp 17–29 | Cite as

Visions of Evolution: Self-organization Proposes What Natural Selection Disposes

  • David BattenEmail author
  • Stanley Salthe
  • Fabio Boschetti
Article

Abstract

This article reviews the seven “visions” of evolution proposed by Depew and Weber (1995, Darwinism Evolving: Systems Dynamics and the Genealogy of Natural Selection, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press), concluding that each posited relationship between natural selection and self-organization has suited different aims and approaches. In the second section of the article, we show that these seven viewpoints may be collapsed into three fundamentally different ones: (1) natural selection drives evolution; (2) self-organization drives evolution; and (3) natural selection and self-organization are complementary aspects of the evolutionary process. We then argue that these three approaches are not mutually exclusive, since each may apply to different stages of development of different systems. What emerges from our discussion is a more encompassing view: that self-organization proposes what natural selection disposes.

Keywords

complex systems development evolution natural selection self-organization 

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Copyright information

© Konrad Lorenz Institute for Evolution and Cognition Research 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric ResearchAspendaleAustralia
  2. 2.Department of Biological SciencesBinghamton UniversityBinghamtonUSA
  3. 3.CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric ResearchWembleyAustralia

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