Robert Plomin is a Professor of Behavioural Genetics at King’s College London and author of Blueprint: How DNA Makes Us Who We Are. The conversation includes sections on the history of the field of behavioral genetics, and why we should not undersell what it tells us about why people turn out the way they do. Research involving twins, adoptees, and now looking directly at the genome, use a variety of methods to arrive at the same conclusion and all reveal that differences between individuals are rooted in our DNA, and the role of the home environment is very limited. Richard and Robert touch on parenting, what is happening in China and elsewhere across the world, consumer genomics, the existence of the p factor, and whether behavioral genetics can find more acceptance outside of the academic literature. They also discuss the potential political implications of the field.
A transcript of the conversation is available here.