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Caroline Uggla

phoyoCU Email:

Post-doctoral researcher
Human Evolution Ecology Group


My interests are based around life history theory and understanding variation in health-seeking behaviours and reproductive decision-making. Since achieving or maintaining good health requires resources of some kind (time, money, skill etc.) investments in health have to be traded against other fitness generating activities, such as mating or parenting effort. Life history theory can thus make predictions about variation in health-seeking behaviour based on individuals’ real or anticipated returns to inclusive fitness.

For my PhD I am using data from two large-scale demographic surveys from both high and low mortality contexts (sub-Saharan Africa and Northern Ireland respectively), to examine individual and ecological effects on i) age at first birth, ii) risky and premature death, iii) maternal investment in child health.

Research interests

  • Health-seeking behaviours
  • Reproductive decision-making

Academic Background/Education

PhD Anthropology University College London (2015)
MRes Anthropology (Distinction) University College London (2010)
BA (Hons) Anthropology (1st Class) Durham University (2009)


Uggla, C. & Mace, R. Effects of local extrinsic mortality rate, crime and sex ratio on preventable death in Northern Ireland, Evolution, Medicine and Public Health, in press.

Uggla, C. & Mace, R. Local ecology influences reproductive timing in Northern Ireland independently of individual wealth, Behavioral Ecology, in press.

Uggla, C. & Mace, R. (2015). Someone to live for: Effects of partner and dependent children on preventable death in a population wide sample from Northern Ireland. Evolution and Human Behavior; 36, 1-7.

Lawson, D. W., & Uggla, C. (2014). Family Structure and Health in the Developing World: What Can Evolutionary Anthropology Contribute to Population Health Science? In M.A. Gibson & D.W. Lawson (Eds.), Applied Evolutionary Anthropology: Darwinian Approaches to Contemporary World Issues. (pp.1-31). Springer.

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