Russell David Gray is an evolutionary biologist and psychologist working on applying quantitative methods to the study of cultural evolution and human prehistory. He worked as a professor at the University of Auckland, located in New Zealand. Although originally trained in biology and psychology, Gray has become well known for his studies on the evolution of the Austronesian language family using computational phylogenetic methods.
Gray also performs research on animal cognition. One of his main research-projects studies tool-use among New Caledonian crows.
In the summer of 2014, the Max Planck Society announced that the Max Planck Institute of Economics in Jena, Germany would receive a new and different mandate. Along with Johannes Krause, Gray was appointed director of a new Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History, commencing February 1, 2014.
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