About this Research Topic
Plant domestication fascinated generations of scholars from different disciplines, including (but not limited to) anthropology, geography, archaeology, botany, genetics, agronomy, and evolution. The cultural transition from an economy based on foraging (hunting-gathering) to food production (the Agricultural Revolution) was fundamental for the rise of Old and New World civilizations. In fact, most of our present-day major crop plants that sustain humanity are based on species that were domesticated in antiquity.
The potential of an organism is a function of its evolutionary history. Therefore, the agronomic potential and yield-limiting factors of our modern crop plants are better understood via the prism of the evolutionary trajectory of the relevant species from their wild-type situation via the domestication episode, through millennia of evolution under domestication, and recent genetic and genomic assisted breeding. Evidence based understanding of the cultural and biological aspects of plant domestication and crop evolution under domestication is fundamental for the reconstruction of past (pre)historical processes pertaining to human culture, as well as to the biological evolution of the relevant species. Likewise, such an evolutionary perspective is imperative for modern crop breeding required to ensure global food security for future human generations.
This Research Topic aims at promoting discussions on major issues sitting at the crux of plant domestication research, including (but not limited to) the following issues:
- the geography of plant domestication (diffused versus focused)
- the time frame and pace of plant domestication (episodic versus protracted)
- the scope of plant domestication (inclusive, or a single crop at a time act)
- the coalescence of founder crop package(s)
- the question of human intentionality or consciousness versus unconsciousness concerning plant domestication
We welcome the following article types: Original Research, Review, and Opinion.
Keywords: Crop improvement, Selection, Neolithic Revolution, farming, foraging, founder effect
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.