The powers and pitfalls of parsimony

  title={The powers and pitfalls of parsimony},
  author={C B Stewart},
Parsimony analysis is a powerful tool for the study of biological evolution. It is used to construct phylogenetic trees, to evaluate alternative hypotheses objectively, and to study evolutionary pattern and process. Yet, as comparative data sets expand, the pitfalls of parsimony analysis are catching experts and novices alike. 
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It can be concluded that parsimony analysis cannot be used in evolutionary studies with any confidence and that, if it is renounced, as it appears necessary, current methods of cladistic analysis become unmanageable.
Introduction to Inferring Evolutionary Relationships
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