The multiregional hypothesis, multiregional evolution (MRE), or polycentric hypothesis is a scientific model that provides an alternative explanation to the more widely accepted "Out of Africa" model of monogenesis for the pattern of human evolution.
Multiregional evolution holds that the human species first arose around two million years ago and subsequent human evolution has been within a single, continuous human species. This species encompasses all archaic human forms such as H. erectus and Neanderthals as well as modern forms, and evolved worldwide to the diverse populations of anatomically modern humans (Homo sapiens).
The hypothesis contends that the mechanism of clinal variation through a model of "Centre and Edge" allowed for the necessary balance between genetic drift, gene flow and selection throughout the Pleistocene, as well as overall evolution as a global species, but while retaining regional differences in certain morphological features. Proponents of multiregionalism point to fossil and genomic data and continuity of archaeological cultures as support for their hypothesis.
The multiregional hypothesis was first proposed in 1984, and then revised in 2003. In its revised form, it is similar to the Assimilation Model, which holds that modern humans originated in Africa and today share a predominant recent African origin, but have also absorbed small, geographically variable, degrees of admixture from other regional (archaic) hominin species.

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