It's not all fun and games: social complexity and play behaviour in wild bonobos

Isabel Behncke is a field primatologist with a background in ecology, evolutionary and behavioural sciences (Zoology BSc & Conservation MSc UCL, Human Evolution MPhil Cambridge, DPhil Evolutionary Anthropology Oxford). Her broad interest on how can our evolutionary past help understand human and non-human primate behaviour. She is particularly interested in social and behavioral complexity, the ability to adapt to changing contexts, and the role of bonded relationships in these processes. Play behaviour - and adult play in particular- is used as a focal research area from where to explore these issues. For her DPhil she did the first in-depth study of play behavior in wild bonobos (Wamba, DR Congo) following the habituated Kamekake (E1) group for three years. Isabel is also passionate about science communication (anything from radio, film documentaries with BBC to speaking at TED, United Nations, the G-20, WIRED, and far-out country schools in Patagonia, Congo & elsewhere). She just moved to NYC and is an associate professor at Social Complexity Research Center (CICS), UDD, Santiago Chile.

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