Emily Davis is a graduate student in linguistics. She is interested in the evolutionary basis of human language, especially concerning the phenomenon of recursion-- the process by which one sentence can be nested within another. Recursion is a key characteristic of human language, but it may be neither specifically linguistic nor specifically human. For example, there is evidence for recursion in non-linguistic domains of cognition, such as navigation, calculation, task planning, and tool use. Emily is curious about how these cognitive abilities relate to each other (in both humans and animals) and may have contributed to the evolution of language. She is also interested in how new languages emerge, such as creoles and local sign languages, and especially the development of grammatical recursion therein. She investigates these phenomena through the process of iterated learning, the modification of sequences through repeated transmission from person to person as in a game of "telephone." In her spare time, she likes to watch and photograph local birds.