Tim White

Professor of Integrative Biology and Co-Director, Human Evolution Research Center
Keywords: evolution
Research Areas: paleoanthropology, human evolution, human osteology, taphonomy, zooarchaeology, Africa, Southwest, Ethiopia
Website: http://ib.berkeley.edu/people/lab_detail.php?lab=50

Research Description:

My primary interests involve human evolution in all its dimensions. My research emphasizes fieldwork designed to acquire new data on early hominid skeletal biology, environmental context, and behavior. I have worked on hominids spanning the Pliocene and Pleistocene, from phylogenetic and functional perspectives. In parallel with this research, but in a more behavioral realm, I have investigated bone modification in the Pleistocene of the Old World and in the Holocene Southwest United States. Research underway includes fieldwork in Ethiopia and Turkey, and laboratory studies in both countries and in Berkeley.

My laboratory, part of the Laboratory for Human Evolutionary Studies established by Professor Emeritus F.C. Howell, is an international center for research and training. The NSF-HOMINID program project “Researching Hominid Origins Initiative” is based in this laboratory. Former graduate students have done fieldwork and/or laboratory studies in China, France, Tanzania, Malawi, Kenya, Jordan, Turkey, and Ethiopia. Current graduate students are studying vertebrate (including hominid) paleontology and human osteology.

Selected publications:

  • Haile-Selassie, Y., Suwa, G. and White, T.D. 2004. Late Miocene Teeth from Middle Awash, Ethiopia, and Early Hominid Dental Evolution. Science 303:1503-1505.
  • White, T.D., B. Asfaw, D. DeGusta, H. Tilbert, G.D. Richards, G. Suwa, and F.C. Howell. 2003. Pleistocene Homo sapiens> from Middle Awash, Ethiopia. Nature 423:742-747.
  • White, T.D. 2003. Early hominids–Diversity or distortion? Science 299:1994-1996.
  • Lovejoy, C.O., R.S. Meindl, J.C. Ohman, K.G. Heiple, and T.D. White. 2002. The Maka femur and its bearing on the antiquity of human walking: Applying contemporary concepts of morphogenesis to the human fossil record. American Journal of Physical Anthropology 119:97-133.
  • Asfaw, B., W.H. Gilbert, Y. Beyene, W.K. Hart, P.R. Renne, G. WoldeGabriel, E.S. Vrba, and T.D. White. 2002. Remains of Homo erectus from Bouri, Middle Awash, Ethiopia. Nature 416:317-320.
  • WoldeGabriel, G., Y. Haile-Selassie, P.R. Renne, W.K. Hart, S.H. Ambrose, B. Asfaw, G. Heiken, and T.D. White. 2001. Geology and palaeontology of the Late Miocene Middle Awash valley, Afar rift, Ethiopia. Nature 412:175-178.
  • White, T.D. 2000. A view on the science: Physical anthropology at the millennium. American Journal of Physical Anthropology 113:287-292.
  • Defleur, A., T.D. White, P. Valensi, L. Slimak, and E. CrŽgut-Bonnoure. 1999. Neanderthal cannibalism at Moula-Guercy, Ardche, France. Science 286:128-131.
  • Asfaw, B., T.D. White, C.O. Lovejoy, B. Latimer, S. Simpson, and G. Suwa. 1999. Australopithecus garhi: A new species of early hominid from Ethiopia. Science 284:629-635.

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