The 2022 winner of the CES New Investigator Award is Nicole Wen of Brunel University London. Nicole was presented with the award at the 2022 CES Conference in Aarhus, Denmark.


2022 New Investigator Award winner Nicole Wen


In announcing the award, the evaluation committee commented:

“We were impressed by her research into how children learn rituals and conventions that combined ethnography, behavioral experiments, and social group tasks. We believed that her work revealed interesting and empirically focused findings with broad educational and community outreach possibilities.
In particular we were excited to see her future goals for applying her research to educational environments to help tackle bullying and racism. We also appreciated her contributions to the Cultural Evolution Society by her representative position and her organisation of important workshops and roundtables.”​​​​​​​


The New Investigator Award is given to a researcher who has shown outstanding contribution and potential in the field within 5 years of gaining their PhD. The award is intended to highlight and recognise the emerging researchers who have already made an impact on our field through their scholarship, or by integrating their research activities with superlative mentorship or training or academic service that has contributed to enhancing the scientific impact of the field.


We also congratulate the two other finalists for the 2022 New Investigator Award:

Patrick Savage (Keio University), about whom the evaluation committee wrote:

“We thought his work on music evolution was innovative and world leading, and appreciated his development of large collaborative projects and construction of important cross-cultural datasets.”


2022 New Investigator Award finalist Patrick Savage


Damien Blasi (Harvard University), about whom the committee noted:

“We found his work on language evolution and linguistic diversity to be innovative and world leading. We especially liked his contribution to the diversity of our discipline through outreach and mentoring to scholars from the global south.”


2022 New Investigator Award finalist Damian Blasi