Russell Gray completed his Ph.D. at the University of Auckland, New Zealand, in 1990. He spent four years lecturing at the University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand, before returning to the School of Psychology at the University of Auckland. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of New Zealand and has been awarded several fellowships, as well as the inaugural Mason Durie Medal for his contributions to social science. Russell Gray's research spans the areas of linguistics, animal cognition, philosophy of biology and the evolution of human and animal behavior. He pioneered the application of computational evolutionary methods to questions about linguistic prehistory. He has been Director at the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History since June 2014.