Arran Davis

Arran Davis

DPhil Student

Wolfson College


General scientific interests

Broadly, and like my fellow researchers at ICEA, I am interested in using evolutionary theory to understand human behaviour. In the past I have studied the cultural activities that lead to bonded, cooperative relationships among humans. For my DPhil (PhD) I am studying the interaction between social relationships and human psychology and physiology, investigating how the presence of strong social relationships affect the way we respond to our environments. I have been employing a variety of methods to investigate these questions, including those from experimental psychology, big data analysis, and neuroscience.

Previous Education

Master of Science (MSc) in Cognitive and Evolutionary Anthropology, University of Oxford (2014) with Distinction
Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in global studies and Spanish, South Dakota State University (2012) with Honors College Distinction
Winona Cotter High School (2007) with Honors


Clarendon Scholarship for DPhil Studies - University of Oxford (2014)
Dr. Nicola Knight Dissertation Prize in Quantitative Methods - Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology, University of Oxford (2014)
Schultz-Werth Award for outstanding undergraduate research - South Dakota State University (2012)
Division 1 Track & Field Academic All-American (3rd Team) - Capital One Academic All-America (2012)


Davis, A. and Taylor, J. (In press). Social Cohesion. International Encyclopedia of Anthropology.

Davis, A., Taylor, J. & Cohen, E. (2016). How the buzz of dancing and sports bond us together. Aeon.

Davis, A., Taylor, J., & Cohen, E. (2015). Social Bonds and Exercise: Evidence for a Reciprocal Relationship. PLoS ONE 10(8), e0136705. 


Taylor, J. and Davis, A. (2016, June). Social Bonds and Exercise: Evidence for a Reciprocal Relationship. Talk presented at the Human Behavior and Evolution Society Annual Meeting, Vancouver, Canada.

Davis, A., Taylor, J., & Cohen E. (2015, March) Bonds, sweat and peers: the effects of group exercise on cooperation and performance. Poster presented at the European Human Behaviour and Evolution Association Conference. Helsinki, Finland.

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