Current and Past Projects
Human morphological diversification in the Argentinean Pampas: Implications for the Peopling of South America
Funding agency: DFG - Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (Germany)
The Pampean region in Central-East Argentina constitutes one of the most suitable areas for studying the peopling of South America due to the presence of numerous reliably dated human remains from the late Pleistocene to the late Holocene. By using samples from several sites in the Argentinean Pampas, as well as other early Holocene sites in South America, the present project aims to shed light on diachronic morphological variation.
Konrad Lorenz Institute, Austria
Human Inner Ear Variation in the southern cone: Implications for the Peopling of South America
Funding agency: Wenner-Gren Foundation (United States of America)
Several aspects of the peopling of the New World remain as yet unaddressed. One such enigma concerns whether evolutionary diversification processes resulted from multiple migration waves or local responses following a single migration. Using samples from the Argentinean Pampas, Andes, Delta, Cuyo, Central-Hills, and Patagonia, this project will evaluate the role of stochastic and non-stochastic factors in shaping the morphological diversification of human populations at the southern cone in South America by evaluating morphological changes in the human bony labyrinth.
Paris Diderot University, France
Early Humans in South America: studying the morphological variation in the Peter W. Lund Collection from Brazil
Funding agency: Synthesis+ (European Commission)
The main objective of this project is to study the morphological variation of the early Holocene human skeletal collections from South America: the P.W. Lund collection housed at the Natural History Museum of Denmark. The individuals come from the famous archaeological locality Lagoa Santa (Brazil). Its relevance is due to a combination of factors: the deep history of research (since the 1830s), ancient chronology (i.e., early Holocene), relatively large sample size (N=32), and the distinctive biological features that these individuals present (i.e., plesiomorphic cranial shape, genetic affinities to Australasians).
Painting showing Lund in Lagoa Santa
Virtual Anthropology and Databases for Human Identification in Mexican Populations
Funding agency: DAAD - German Academic Exchange Service (Germany)
With more than 90,000 missing persons and more than 40,000 bodies that still need a personal identification, Mexico is going through a forensic crisis. As part of a bilateral collaboration between Mexican and German universities, this project aims at joining efforts on this regard by applying virtual anthropology methods, and improving current databases for human remains in Oaxaca.