The Comparative Cognition Laboratory investigates the evolutionary origins of human cognition. Our work aims to discover the foundational abilities that give rise to the complex cognitive capacities that are universally shared among human adults. To do so, we study the cognitive capacities present in our species’ closest living phylogenetic relatives, the non-human primates (hereafter, primates). Our work with primates takes a broadly comparative approach, comparing the cognitive abilities of a wide range of different species within the primate order, including five lemur species (ring-tailed lemurs, bamboo lemurs, mongoose lemurs, red-ruffed lemurs, and brown lemurs), Barbary macaques, and rhesus macaques.

We perform our studies at five different research sites: