Digital analysis on the theory of morality-as-cooperation


This project, conducted in partnership with Oxford University and Macquarie University, combines expertise in natural language processing (NLP), moral philosophy, and anthropology to test out the anthropological theory of morality-as-cooperation. The theory 'argues that morality consists of a collection of biological and cultural solutions to the problems of cooperation recurrent in human social life' (Curry, Mullins, Whitehouse (2019), 'Is it good to cooperate' 60(1) Current Anthropology 47).

This project will tap into the rich amount data on human culture that have been compiled by anthropologists through the decades in the form of ethnographic fieldnotes, amongst other data sources, to determine how societies practice cooperation.

We will combine quantitative techniques adapted from natural language processing and data science with qualitative techniques in the humanities, we can process large amounts of textual data to help us make sense of the ideas within these rich, nuanced, documentations.