Evolutionary anthropology

Check out some of these Conversations in Human Evolution with evolutionary anthropologists from all over the world, just by clicking on their photos.

Duncan Stibbard-Hawkes

Durham University

Dr Duncan Stibbard Hawke is an evolutionary anthropologist of Durham University, UK. Duncan works with the Hadza in northern Tanzania, who have traditionally subsisted through hunting and gathering. Duncan is interested in food-sharing, the use and abuse of signalling theory and forager egalitarianism. He previously won the Ruggles-Gates Award from the Royal Anthropological Institute as well as a grant from the Leakey Foundation for his PhD project: Reading the signals: What does Hadza hunting success honestly convey? Duncan recently finished a teaching fellowship at Durham University, where he lectured in evolutionary anthropology. He has recently started postdoc at the University of Pennsylvania for the ‘Culture of Schooling’ project, investigating Hadza engagement with formal education.

Isabelle Winder

Bangor University

Dr Isabelle Winder is an evolutionary anthropologist and Senior Lecturer in Zoology at Bangor University, UK. Her research covers a wide range of topics, from primatology, comparative anatomy, primate responses to climate change and, of course, human evolution! Isabelle currently holds a lectureship in Zoology at Bangor University where she teaches a number of specialist modules, including a field course in Uganda. She has also worked at the Palaeo Centre at the University of York and is an Honourary Research Associate in the Department of Musculoskeletal Biology & Institute for Ageing and Chronic Disease at the University of Liverpool.

Fiona Jordan

University of Bristol

Professor Fiona Jordan is an evolutionary and linguistic anthropologists from the Department of Anthropology and Archaeology at the University of Bristol, UK. Fiona’s research primarily seeks to understand the evolution of cultural diversity using data, methods and theory from a variety of disciplines, such as biology, psychology, anthropology, and linguistics. She is the leader of the excd (Evolution of Cross-Cultural Diversity) lab, based at the University of Bristol, which investigates how the staggering, yet not infinite, variety in human culture has evolved. Prior to her professorship, she has also worked at University College London in the Centre for the Evolution of Cultural Diversity and the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguists in the Netherlands.

Ammie Kalan

Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology

Dr Ammie Kalan is a primatologist at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig, Germany. Ammie is a postdoctoral researcher investigating chimpanzee culture and communication as part of the Pan African Project: The Cultured Chimpanzee. Over her career as a primatologist, Ammie has conducted fieldwork in Guinea-Bissau, Tanzania, Côte d’Ivoire, Republic of Congo and Costa Rica. She has developed a passive acoustic monitoring system for primates living in tropical forests and continues to be interested in bridging the gap between behavioural research and applied conservation through the use of non-invasive monitoring. Next year, she will be starting as a tenure-track Assistant Professor in Anthropology at the University of Victoria in British Columbia, Canada.

John Gowlett

University of Liverpool

Professor John Gowlett is an African archaeologist and evolutionary anthropologist at the University of Liverpool, UK. He is a world leader in a number of areas of human evolution studies, such as the origins of fire use, the emergence of language and art and the evolution of early stone technologies. Recently, a number of colleagues came together from around the world to produce an edited volume titled ‘Landscapes of Human Evolution: Contributions in Honour of John Gowlett’, paying homage to his impressively extensive research profile. 

Simon Greenhill

Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History

Dr Simon Greenhill is a Senior Scientist in the Department of Linguistic and Cultural Evolution at the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History in Jena, and the ARC Centre of Excellence for the Dynamics of Language at Australian National University. Simon’s research primarily focuses on the evolution of languages and linguistic diversity, and what this can tell about about human prehistory. His research mainly uses Bayesian phylogenetic methods and he has helped build a number of large-scale linguistic and cultural databases. He is also one of the editors of Language Dynamics and Change, and he is on the editorial board of the Journal of Language Evolution.

Sally Street

Durham University

Today’s conversation is with Dr Sally Street, Assistant Professor in Evolutionary Approaches to Cognition and Culture at Durham University. Sally obtained her BA in Politics And Sociology at the University of Leeds in 2008, before graduating with an MSc in Evolutionary Psychology at the University of Liverpool in 2010. She then went on to receive her PhD on primate brain evolution and sexual selection from the University of St Andrews in 2014, and has since worked at the University of Hull and the University of St Andrews as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow before taking on her current role at Durham University in 2017. Sally is an inter-disciplinary researcher with broad interests about large-scale patterns and processes in the evolution of behaviour, cognition and culture. Most recently, her research has focused on the evolution of technically skilled behaviour, such as musical ability.

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