People

Martin Daly


(Ph.D., Toronto)
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905-525-9140, ext.23018 
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I am interested in the relevance of evolutionary and ecological theories to psychology. My more specific interests include comparative studies of social diversity among related animal species, sex differences, parent-offspring relations, lethal violence, and the evolutionary consequences of uncertain paternity in animals with internal fertilization.

I conduct research on both human and nonhuman behaviour, usually in collaboration with Margo Wilson. We do field and laboratory research on the behavioural ecology of desert rodents, and we do epidemiological studies of homicide, which we treat as a window on human passions and antagonisms and hence as a sort of assay of interpersonal conflict.


  • Daly, M., & Wilson, M. (1998). The truth about Cinderella: A Darwinian view of parental love. London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson. ISBN: 0 297 84161 0 4.99 pounds sterling
  • Daly, M., & Wilson, M.I. (1994). Discriminativ e parental solicitude and the relevance of evolutionary models to the analysis of motivational systems. Pp. 1269-1286, in M. Gazzaniga, ed., The Cognitive Neurosciences. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
  • Daly M., Singh, L.S., & Wilson, M. (1993). Children fathered by previous partners: a risk factor for violence against women. Canadian Journal of Public Health 84: 209-210.
  • Wilson, M., Daly, M., & Wright, C. (1993). Uxoricide in Canada: demographic risk patterns. Canadian Journal of Criminolog 35: 263-291.
  • Daly, M., Jacobs, L.F., Wilson, M.I., & Behrends, P.R. (1992). Scatter-hoarding by kangaroo rats (Dipodomys merriami) and pilferage from their caches. Behavioral Ecology 3: 102-111.
  • Daly, M., Behrends, P.R., Wilson, M.I., & Jacobs, L.F. (1992). Behavioural modulation of predation risk: moonlight avoidance and crepuscular compensation in a nocturnal desert rodent, Dipodomys merriami. Animal Behaviour 44: 1-4.
  • Daly, M., & Wilson, M. (1988). Homicide. New York: Aldine de Gruyter.
  • Daly, M., & Wilson, M. (1988). Evolutionary social psychology and family homicide. Science 242: 519-524.
  • Daly, M., & Wilson, M. (1983). Sex, evolution and behavior, 2nd ed. Belmont CA: Wadsworth.


Dr. Daly is past-President of the Human Behavior & Evolution Society (1991-1993). He has been elected to the executive committees of the Animal Behavior Society and the International Society for Behavioral Ecology, and has been the recipient of fellowships from the J.S. Guggenheim Foundation, the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, and the Rockefeller Foundation.

Contact Department

Department of Psychology, Neuroscience & Behaviour (PNB)
Psychology Building (PC), Room 102
McMaster University
1280 Main Street West
Hamilton Ontario L8S 4K1
Canada