2019 and in press

  1. Willard, A. K., Cingl. L, & Norenzayan A,. (in press). Cognitive Biases and Religious Belief:  A path model replication in the Czech Republic and Slovakia with a focus on anthropomorphism. Social Psychological and Personality Science.pdf

  2. Lang, M., Purzycki, B. G., Apicella, C., Atkinson, Q., Bolyanatz, A., Cohen, E., Kundtová Klocová, E., Handley, C., Lesorogol, C., Mathew, S., McNamara, R. A., Moya C.,Placek, C., Soler, M., Vardy, T., Weigel, J., Willard, A. K., Xygalatas, D., Norenzayan, A., & Henrich, J. (in press). Powerful Gods and Large-Scale Cooperation: A Study of Impersonal Prosociality across 15 Societies. Proceedings of the Royal Society B.

  3. Willard, A. K., Busch, J. T. A., Cullum, K. A., Letourneau, S. M., Sobel, D. M., Callanan, M., & Legare, C. H. (in press).  Explain this, explore that: A study of parent-child interaction in a children’s museum. Child Development. pdf

  4. Willard, A. K. & McNamara, R. A. (2019). The Minds of God(s) and Humans: Differences in Mind Perception in Fiji and North America. Cognitive Science. pdf

  5. McNamara, R. A., Willard, A. K., Norenzayan, A. & Henrich J. (2019). Weighing outcome vs. intent across societies: How cultural models of mind shape moral reasoning. Cognition. 182, 95-108. DOI: 10.1016/j.cognition.2018.09.008 pdf


  1. Purzycki, B. G., Pisor, A. C., Apicella, C., Atkinson, Q., Cohen, E., Henrich, J., McElreath, R., McNamara, R. A., Norenzayan, A., Willard, A. K., and Xygalatas, D (2018). The Cognitive and Cultural Foundations of Moral Behavior. Evolution and Human Behavior.

  2. Purzycki, B. G., Ross, C. T., Apicella, C., Atkinson, Q. D., Cohen, E., McNamara, R. A., Willard, A. K., Xygalatas, D., Norenzayan, A. & Henrich, J. (2018). Material security, life history, and moralistic religions: A cross-cultural examination. PloS one, 13(3), e0193856. pdf

  3. Busch J.T.A., Willard A.K., Legare C.H. (2018) Explanation Scaffolds Causal Learning and Problem Solving in Childhood. In: Saylor M., Ganea P. (eds) Active Learning from Infancy to Childhood. Springer, Cham.​ link

  4. Purzycki, B. G., Norenzayan, A., Apicella, C., Atkinson, Q., Cohen, E., McNamara, R. A., Willard, A. K., and Henrich, J. (2018). The Evolution of Religion and Morality: A Synthesis of Ethnographic and Experimental Evidence from Eight Societies. Religion Brain and Behavior, 8:2, 101-132, DOI: 10.1080/2153599X.2016.1267027 pdf

  5. Willard, A. K. (2018). Religion and Prosocial Behaviour among the Indo-Fijians. Religion Brain and Behavior, 8:2, 227-242, DOI: 10.1080/2153599X.2016.1267032 pdf


  1. Willard, A. K. & Cingl, L. (2017). Testing Theories of Religion and Secularization in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Evolution and Human Behavior. pdf
  2. Willard, A. K. & Norenzayan, A. (2017). “Spiritual But Not Religious”: cognition, schizotypy, and conversion in understanding alternative beliefs. Cognition, 165, 137–146. pdf


  1. Purzycki, B.G., Apicella, C., Atkinson, Q., Cohen, E., McNamara, R. A., Willard, A. K., Xygalatas, D., Norenzayan, A., Henrich, J. (2016). Cross-cultural dataset for the Evolution of Religion and Morality Project. Scientific Data, 3, 160099. link
  2. Shariff, A. F., Willard, A. K., Muthukrishna, M., Kramer, S., & Henrich, J. (2016). What is the Association Between Religious Affiliation and Children’s Altruism? Current Biology, 26, R699-R700. pdf
  3. Willard, A. K., Shariff, A. F. & Norenzayan, A. (2016). Religious Priming as a research tool for studying religion: Evidentiary Value, Current Issues, and Future Directions. Current Opinions in Psychology, 12, 71-75. pdf
  4. Willard, A. K., Henrich, J. &  Norenzayan, A. (2016). Memory and Belief in the Transmission of Counterintuitive Content. Human Nature, 27, 221-243. pdf
  5. Norenzayan, A., Shariff, A. F., Gervais, W., Willard, A. K., McNamara, R. A., Slingerland, E. & Henrich, J. (2016). Parochial prosocial religions: Historical and contemporary evidence for a cultural evolutionary process. [Reply to Commentaries]. Behavior and Brain Sciences. pdf
  6. Norenzayan, A., Shariff, A. F., Gervais, W., Willard, A. K., McNamara, R. A., Slingerland, E. & Henrich, J. (2016). The Cultural Evolution of Prosocial Religions [Target Article]. Behavior and Brain Sciences. pdf
  7. Purzycki, B.G., Apicella, C. , Atkinson, Q. , Cohen, E. , McNamara, R. A. , Willard, A. K. , Xygalatas, D., Norenzayan, A. , Henrich, J. (2016). Moralizing Gods, Supernatural Punishment, and the Expansion of Human Sociality. Nature, 530, 327–330. [email for pdf]
  8. Shariff, A. F., Willard, A. K., Andersen, T. & Norenzayan, A. (2016). Religious Priming: A Meta-Analysis With a Focus on Prosociality. Personality and Social Psychology Review, 20, 27-48. pdf
  9. Purzycki, B. G., & Willard, A. K. (2016). Accounting for Variation and Stability in Religious Cognition [Reply to Commentaries]. Religion, Brain and Behaviour, 6, 266-274. pdf
  10. Purzycki, B. G. & Willard, A. K. (2016) MCI Theory: A Critical Discussion [Target Article]. Religion Brain and Behaviour, 6, 207-248.pdf


  1. Willard, A. K. & Norenzayan A. (2013). Cognitive Biases Explain Religious Belief, Paranormal Belief, and Belief in Life’s Purpose. Cognition, 129, 379-391. pdf
  2. Gervais, W., Willard, A. K., Norenzayan, A. & Henrich, J. (2011). The Cultural Transmission of Faith: Why natural intuitions and memory biases are necessary, but insufficient, to explain religious belief. Religion, 41, 389-410. pdf

Commentaries etc.

  1. Willard, A. K., Nakawake, Y. & Jong, J. (in press). The Evolution of the Shaman’s Cultural Toolkit. [Commentary]. Behavior and Brain Sciences.
  2. Willard, A. K. & Baimel, A. (in press). The Evolution of Religion: An interdisciplinary approach. [Commentary]​. Journal for the Cognitive Science of Religion.

  3. Willard, A. K. (2018). Agency Detection is Unnecessary in the Explanation of Religious Belief [Commentary]. Religion Brain and Behavior.pdf

  4. Willard, A. K. (2018). The Evolution of Culture as a New Pattern for Comparative Religion. [Book Commentary]. Method and Theory in the Study of Religion. pdf

  5. Willard, A. K. (2017). Defining Religion [Commentary]. Religion Brain and Behavior. pdf

  6. Willard, A. K. & Legare, C. H. (2016) Ritual wellbeing: A simplified model [Commentary]. Religion Brain and Behavior, 39, e1. pdf