Context Matters: A Response to Autzen and Okasha’s Reply to Takacs and Bourrat

Peter Takacs*, Pierrick Bourrat

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalLetterpeer-review


In a recent reply to Takacs and Bourrat’s article (Biol Philos 37:12, 2022), Autzen and Okasha (Biol Philos 37:37, 2022) question our characterization of the relationship between the geometric mean and arithmetic mean measures of fitness. We here take issue with the claim that our characterization falls prey to the mistakes they highlight. Briefly revisiting what Takacs and Bourrat (Biol Philos 37:12, 2022) accomplished reveals that the key issue of difference concerns cases of deterministic but nonconstant growth. Restricting focus to such cases shows that there is in fact no reason for disagreement.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages7
JournalBiological Theory
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 26 Feb 2024

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Open Access funding enabled and organized by CAUL and its Member Institutions. The authors gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the John Templeton Foundation (#62220). The opinions expressed in this paper are those of the authors and not those of the John Templeton Foundation. This research was also supported under the Australian Research Council’s Discovery Projects funding scheme (Project Numbers FL170100160 & DE210100303).


  • Evolutionary theory
  • Fitness
  • Growth rate
  • Philosophy of biology


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