MPI-SHH Project Members

Contact Information

Michael Petraglia, Prof., Ph.D.
Michael Petraglia, Prof., Ph.D.
Phone: +49 (0) 3641 686-770

Media Contact

Anne Gibson
Tel.: +49 (0)3641 686-950
Petra Mader

Tel.: +49 (0)3641 686-960
Email: presse@shh.mpg.de

Unravelling the Pattern, Impacts and Drivers of Early Modern Human Dispersals from Africa

Michael Petraglia and team receive grant from Leverhulme Trust to study early human dispersals out of Africa.

June 16, 2017

A team of researchers has been awarded a grant by the Leverhulme Trust to explore the migrations of humans out of Africa. The project, led by Simon Blockley of Royal Holloway, University of London, Michael Petraglia of the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History, Simon Armitage of Royal Holloway, University of London, and Chris Stringer of the British Natural History Museum begins July 1, 2017, and is titled “Unravelling the pattern, impacts and drivers of early modern human dispersals from Africa.”
Excavations along ancient lake shorelines in Saudi Arabia. New excavations will examine past environments and assess when early human populations migrated across Arabia. Zoom Image
Excavations along ancient lake shorelines in Saudi Arabia. New excavations will examine past environments and assess when early human populations migrated across Arabia.

Over the next three years the research team will examine a range of important archaeological and environmental sites across the Levant and the Arabian Peninsula in close collaboration with expert archaeologists and scientists from across the region and also from leading research centers in Europe.  The main aim of the project is to resolve uncertainties about the chronology of early human dispersals Out of Africa. New environmental and archaeological information will be coupled with genetic evidence to resolve our understanding of the drivers behind the global distribution and dominance of our species.

Drilling of Jubbah palaeolake in the Nefud Desert of Saudia Arabia. The drill cores will be examined by a suite of scientific studies to reconstruct environments during the past 200,000 years or more. Zoom Image
Drilling of Jubbah palaeolake in the Nefud Desert of Saudia Arabia. The drill cores will be examined by a suite of scientific studies to reconstruct environments during the past 200,000 years or more.

Petraglia has extensive experience in the Middle East, particularly through his work in Arabia as part of his recent ERC-funded Palaeodeserts project. He and his interdisciplinary team will focus on the environments and archaeology of Arabia, investigating palaeo-lakes, caves and drilling locations to examine environmental change and how human populations expanded and contracted in response to fluctuating wet and arid phases over the past 125,000 years.  Together with Petraglia, a new postdoctoral fellow in geoarchaeology will integrate the Arabian findings with the wider project goals.

 
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