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Anthropology offers a broad, holistic approach to the study of climate and environment, incorporating the natural and social sciences.

Faculty with research focusing on climate science, environment and ecology in the Department of Anthropology include:

  • Jack M. Broughton studies the influence of Holocene precipitation variation and its influence on vertebrate faunas and prehistoric human societies in western North America.
  • Brian F. Codding studies human-environment interactions among past and present hunter-gatherer societies in Australia and North America.
  • Kristen Hawkes investigates the interaction of ecology, resource use, and social relationships in the evolution of our lineage.
  • Leslie A. Knapp studies genetic diversity in natural populations of primates, many of which are affected by climate change and habitat destruction
  • Lisbeth Louderback explores how humans coped with environmental change during the Quaternary in arid western North America. She is an interdisciplinary archaeologist with technical expertise in archaeobotany and paleoecology.
  • Shane J. Macfarlan is a cultural anthropologist who examines the evolutionary ecology of cooperation. Currently, he is examining the human-ecosystem dynamics shaping oasis water management in a traditional ranching community in Baja California Sur, Mexico.
  • Duncan Metcalfe is an archaeologist investigating prehistoric adaptations to arid environments from the perspective of behavioral ecology.
  • Richard Paine studies relationships between human populations and their environments. He uses prehistoric demography to study the effects of population growth and the rise of agriculture and urbanism on human pathogens, especially those that cause epidemic diseases. His has also studied relationships between population growth, ecological degradation and the Classic Maya collapse.
  • Alan R. Rogers uses genetic data to study how human population size responded to ancient climatic changes.
  • Dennis O'Rourke uses molecular genetic methods to study migration and colonization in ancient populations of the Americas, and links these population movements and patterns of ancient genetic variation to paleoclimatic reconstructions.

Visit the Anthropology Department for more information