Professor, Department of Anthropology & Graduate Group in Ecology (Human Ecology Area of Interest)
Associate Dean, Division of Social Sciences
University of California at Davis, One Shields Avenue
Davis, CA 95616-8522
Date of Birth: 13 March 1949, age 60.
Family: Sheryl Gerety, spouse; four children
Office telephone: (530)-754-4770
Home telephone: (530)-758-3990
Areas of Topical Expertise:
Behavioral and evolutionary ecology, cultural ecology, hunter-gatherers (sub-arctic Canada), agriculturalists (central Andes, Peru), micro-ecological models of human adaptive processes
1971-74 NSF Graduate Fellow. Cornell University, Ithaca, NY.
1975-76 Research Associate. SUNY at Buffalo, Buffalo, NY.
1977-79 Postdoctoral Research Associate, Program on Science Technology and Society, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY.
1979-85 Assistant Professor of Anthropology, UNC-Chapel Hill.
1986-92 Associate Professor of Anthropology, UNC-Chapel Hill.
1992-02 Professor of Anthropology, UNC-Chapel Hill.
2002- Professor of Anthropology, UC-Davis
Associate Chair (Department of Anthropology, UNC), 1989 - 1991.
Chair (Department of Anthropology, UNC), 1991 - 1996.
Chair (Curriculum in Ecology, UNC), 1996 - 2002.
Associate Director (Carolina Environmental Program), 1996 - 1997.
Chair (Department of Anthropology, UC - Davis), 2005-2009.
Associate Dean, Division of Social Sciences, 2009-present
Field Research Experience:
Peru. Summer 1971. Energy flow and cold adaptation.
Northern Ontario. Calendar year 1975. Foraging strategies and ecological adaptation.
Peru. Summer 1982. Exploration of field sites and research possibilities on the eastern Andean escarpment.
Peru. Summers 1984, 1985 & 1986; Sept. to Jan., 1986-87; Summer 1987. Interdisciplinary human ecology research, NSF grant.
Belize. June 2009. Human systems dynamics of Late Classic political development and ecology.
Affiliations and Memberships:
Graduate Faculty, Ecology Curriculum. UNC-Chapel Hill (to 2002).
Fellow, American Anthropological Association.
Associate, Current Anthropology.
Sigma Xi, Full Member.
Member, Institute for Latin American Studies, UNC-Chapel Hill (to 2002).
Elected Member, Faculty Council (UNC -- CH), 1989-1992.
Contributing Editor, Journal of Archaeological Research.
Editorial Board, Plenum Interdisciplinary Contributions of Archaeology.
NSF panel member (dissertation research), Cultural Anthropology Program, 1997-1999.
Chair, BA/BS Environmental Majors Design Committee (1997-1998).
Member, Environmental Curriculum Committee, Carolina Environmental Program, 1999-2002.
Member, Faculty Advisory Committee, Carolina Environmental Program (1996-2002).
Fellow, Carolina Environmental Program (1999-2002).
Member, Advisory Board to the Graduate School, Fellowship SubComittee (1999-2002).
Editorial Board, Origins of Human Behavior and Culture Series, University of California Press (2005-present).
Editorial Board, American Anthropologist (2005-present).
Distinguished Ecologist Lecture Series, Colorado State University, April 1997.
Fellow, Center for Advanced Studies in the Behavioral Sciences (Palo Alto), Academic Year 1998/99 (declined, due to lack of housing).
Lineberger Distinguished Professor of Anthropology (2002, declined to move to UC - Davis).
1973 "Energy flow at high altitude." American Anthropological Association, New Orleans.
1977 "Foraging strategy adaptations of the boreal forest Cree." Institute of Environmental Studies/Anthropology Department, University of Wisconsin, Madison.
1978 "Optimal foraging in the forest Cree Indians of northern Ontario." Anthropology Department, University of California, Berkeley.
1978 "Evolutionary ecology hypotheses concerning group formation in foraging populations." Symposium on Hunter-Gatherer Aggregation and Dispersion, SUNY at Binghamton.
1979 "Optimal foraging strategies in the boreal forest Cree." Department of Biology, Syracuse University.
1979 "Environmental description and the analysis of human-ecological systems." Society for Applied Anthropology, Philadelphia.
1979 "Foraging strategy adaptations of the boreal forest Cree." American Association of Physical Anthropologists, Niagara Falls, New York.
1981 "Snowshoes and snowmobiles: Indian hunters of northern Ontario." Department of Anthropology, Virginia Commonwealth University.
1981 "Prehistoric Indian hunters of northern Ontario." NSF Supported Program for Middle School Students, Richmond, Virginia.
1982 "Cree-Ojibwa adaptations and adaptive management: Guidelines for development." Paper read at the Symposium, The Impact of Development on People Who Occupy Land at Relatively Low Population Densities, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Washington, D.C.
1982 "Stalking the fundamental theorem: Observations on a nutritious if dangerous quarry." Paper read at the Montgomery Lecture Series Symposium, Optimization in Human Evolution, University of Nebraska, Lincoln.
1983 "Stalking an optimal foraging model." Department of Anthropology, Pennsylvania State University.
1983 "The Analysis of hunter-gatherer diet: Stalking an optimal foraging model." Wenner-Gren Symposium, Food Preferences and Aversions. Cedar Grove, FL.
1984 "Discussant," Symposium: Diet of modern animals and food chain ecology. Gordon Conference, Oxnard, CA.
1984 "The theory of evolution in 1984." Paper read at the Symposium, Evolution: What difference does it make? Division of Extension and Continuing Education & The General Alumni Association, UNC-Chapel Hill.
1985 "On the eyebrow of the mountain: Human ecology in the southern Andes. Irma Honigmann Memorial Lecture, given to the Shared Learning Group, Chapel Hill, NC.
1985 "Optimal foraging: Diet breadth and food sharing in a stochastic environment." Paper read at the Department of Anthropology, U of Washington, Seattle and at the Society for American Archaeology meetings, Denver.
1985 "Diet choice, risk and food sharing in a stochastic environment." Paper delivered at theWenner-Gren Symposium, Risk and Uncertainty: Ecological and Economic Perspectives, Seattle.
1986 "From hunters and gatherers to tillers of the soil." Paper read at the Symposium, The Dawn of Civilization. Division of Extension and Continuing Education & The General Alumni Association, UNC-Chapel Hill.
1986 "Open field, common pot: Risk avoidance in agricultural and hunter-gatherer societies." Paper read at the Fourth International Symposium on Hunter-Gatherers, London School of Economics.
1987 "Production, storage and exchange on the Andean escarpment." Discussion presentation, Conference on Cultural and Ecological Applications of Remote Sensing Technology (NSF & NASA). Boulder, Colorado.
1987 Invited participant, Evolution of Terrestrial Ecosystems Program Conference, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution.
1987 "Open field, common pot: Harvest variability and risk avoidance in agricultural and foraging societies" and "The population ecology of hunter-gatherers and their prey." Dept. Anthropology, U. Tennessee, Knoxville.
1988 "Open field, common pot: Harvest variability and risk avoidance in agricultural and foraging societies" and "The population ecology of hunter-gatherers and their prey." Co-sponsored by the Evolution and Human Behavioral Program, Museum of Anthropology, & Department of Anthropology, U. of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
1988 "Rainfall predictability and water management in the central Andes of Southern Peru." Invited paper presented in the symposium, Canal Irrigation and Water Control Systems in the Andes, 46th International Congress of Americanists, Amsterdam.
1990 "An ecological explanation for limited-effort foraging." Paper read at the 6th International Conference on Hunting and Gathering Societies, University of Alaska, Fairbanks.
1990 Invited participant, Workshop on Climate and Human Ecology, Institute for Environmental Studies, University of Wisconsin, Madison.
1990 "Concepts in historical ecology: the view from evolutionary ecology." Invited participant, Seminar on Historical Ecology, School of American Research, Santa Fe, NM.
1990 "GIS analysis of the agricultural landscape of Cuyo Cuyo, Puno, Perú." Invited paper, Application of Space Technologies in Anthropology, NASA Earth Resources Lab, Stennis, Mississippi.
1991 "GIS analyses of the agricultural landscape of Cuyo Cuyo, Peru." Department of Geography, UNC-Chapel Hill.
1991 "Open field, common pot." Interdepartmental Seminar Series in Evolution and Systematics, University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario.
1991 "Weaving New Patterns for Change in the World," Invited participant, Chancellor's Club, Annual Meeting, Carolina in the Forefront. Friday Center, UNC - Chapel Hill, NC.
1991 "Workshop on Climate and Human Ecology," Invited participant, Institute for Environmental Studies, University of Wisconsin, Madison.
1992 "Food sharing to field scattering: Risk and the origins of agriculture." Invited paper, 1992 Fryxell Symposium, Society for American Archaeology meetings, Pittsburgh, PA.
1993 "Work, Resources and Population Dynamics in Foraging Societies." Seminar presented to the Duke University, Department of Biological Anthropology.
1993 "Original affluence: The evolutionary ecology of production in foraging societies," and "Gifts given, gifts taken: The evolutionary ecology of exchange in primitive societies," talks presented to the University of Tennessee Department of Anthropology.
1994 "Race, IQ and heritability." A talk prepared for school administrators in the Chapel Hill -- Carrboro School System.
1994 "Forager population ecology and resource conservation." Canadian Anthropological Society meetings, Vancouver, BC.
1994 "A marginal model of tolerated theft." Human Behavior and Evolution Society meetings, Ann Arbor, MI.
1995 "Evolutionary ecology and history." A paper presented at the First Open Meeting of the Human Dimensions of Global Environmental Change Community, Duke University.
1997 "Overdetermination of resource transfers among social foragers." Paper presented at theAmerican Association for the Advancement of Science meetings, Seattle, WA.
1997 "A natural history of exchange: The evolutionary ecology of food sharing in bats, primates and humans," "The population dynamics of an encounter-contingent forager and multiple prey," and "Models of dietary risk avoidance in foragers," Visiting Distinguished Ecologist, Colorado State University.
1998 "Screwing around with uncertainty: A risk-sensitive approach to fertility decisions, population growth and other demographic mysteries." Paper presented to the Carolina Population Center, 1 May 1998 (with Paul Leslie). back to top
1998 "Intra-group resource transfers: Comparative evidence, models and implications." Invited presentation, Wenner Gren Conference on The Early Human Diet: The role of meat. Madison, WI.
1998 "The population dynamics of an encounter-contingent forager and multiple prey," and "Risk-sensitivity in human (and possibly, non-human) fertility behavior: The variance compensation hypothesis." Invited Talks, Graduate Group in Ecology and Department of Anthropology, UC-Davis.
1998 "Risk-sensitive fertility behavior." Invited talk, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig, Germany.
1998 "The variance compensation hypothesis: Toward a risk-sensitive analysis of human fertility." Paper presented with Paul Leslie in the session, Behavioral and Evolutionary Ecology Approaches to Population, American Anthropological Association meetings.
1999 “Risk-sensitive fertility behavior,” and “Human ecology in the Andes: The Cuyo Cuyo project.” Invited talks, Department of Anthropological Sciences, Stanford University.
1999 “Recent work on the behavioral ecology of hunter-gatherers.” Invited talk, Biosocial Society of the United Kingdom, Durham, England.
1999 Invited participant, Santa Fe Institute/UNC-CH, Workshop on Computer Modeling of Political Processes. UNC – Chapel Hill, NC.
2000 “On the eyebrow of the mountain: Cultural ecology and interdisciplinary research in the Andes” and “The effects of unpredictable offspring mortality on human fertility behavior,” talks presented at Washington State University, Vancouver and Pullman, respectively.
2000 "Effects of central place foraging on resource selection and cooperation." Paper presented in the symposium, Evolutionary Approaches to Cooperative Hunting, American Anthropological Association meetings, San Francisco.
2000 Invited participant, workshop on Conceptualisation of human-environmental dynamics: Steps towards a unified evolutionary modeling framework. Santa Fe Institute, Santa Fe, New Mexico.
2000 "Risk-sensitive fertility and its implications for human population ecology." Paper presented to the Department of Anthropology, University of Georgia.
2001 "A risk-sensitive model of fertility behavior: Implications for some persistent demographic problems." Poster presentation with Paul Leslie, Population Association of America, Washington, DC.
2001 "Consequences of stochasticity in reproductive outcomes." Poster presentation with Paul Leslie, Human Biology Association, Kansas City, MO.
2001 "The population ecology of foragers in a patchy environment of plant resources." Paper presented in the symposium, Foraging Theory and the Transition to Agriculture, Society for American Archaeology meetings, New Orleans.
2001 "Effects of central place foraging on resource selection and cooperation." Paper presented at the American Anthropological Association meetings, San Francisco.
2001 "Foraging theory and adaptive dynamics." Invited paper, Workshop on Conceptualization of Human-Environmental Dynamics, Santa Fe Institute, Santa Fe, NM.
2001 "Risk-sensitive fertility in humans and other species: Model, implications and evidence. Paper presented to the Department of Anthropology, UC-Davis.
2001 "Advancing Steward's project a half century later: The place of behavioral ecology in cultural ecology." Paper presented in the symposium, From Cultural Ecology to Ecological Anthropology to Environmental Anthropology to?", American Anthropological Association meetings, Washington, DC.
2003 "Planning Conference for NSF Summer Workshops in Research Methods for Cultural Anthropology." National Science Foundation, Washington, DC.
2004 "An informal history of foraging theory." Invited paper, Department of Anthropology, CSU-Chico.
2004 "Ghosts of foraging theory, past and future." Invited Plenary Session paper, Great Basin Anthropological Conference, Sparks, NV.
2005 "Interview, evolutionary anthropology." The Mogul Radio Show, DCTV.
2005 "Impediments to socio-economic intensification and the development of inequality in hunter-gatherer populations." Invited paper, Workshop on the Coevolution of Behaviors and Institutions, Santa Fe Institute, Santa Fe, NM.
2005 "Seven reasons to remain a forager." Invited paper, Far Western Anthropological Research Group Occasional Speaker Series, Davis, CA.
2005 "Seven reasons to remain a forager despite occasional or low-level dependence on domesticates, many or most of them related to environmental fluctations." Invited paper, School of American Research Small Seminar, Hunting and Gathering Subsistence Patterns and Climatic Change in the Late Pleistocene, Santa Fe.
2006 "Impediments to the origins of agriculture as a source of insights about prehistoric economics." Invited talk, University of Oregon Association of Anthropology Graduate Students and the Institute of Cognitive and Decision Sciences. Eugene, Oregon.
2006 "Human Behavioral Ecology and California Archaeology.” Commentary, Society for California Archaeology, Annual Meeting, San Jose, CA.
2006 "Impediments to the origins of agriculture as a souce of insights about prehistoric economies." Talk, Department of Anthropology, UCLA. Los Angeles, CA.
2007 "Foraging theory: Venerable but still young." Talk and workshop at the inaugural 3UC Conference on Evolutionary Behavioral Sciences; Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, CA.
2007 "Four opportunities for the adventurous individual in pursuit of agricultural origins." Talk (co-authored with Douglas Kennett) and small-group workshop, A Conversation on Early Agriculture. Anthropology Department, SUNY Plattsburgh.
2007 "Comments," New Research in the Evolutionary Ecology of Food Transfers. American Anthropological Association Meetings, Washington DC. Session sponsored by the Evolutionary Anthropology Society.
2008 "Discussion Leader, Risk," The World as It Was. Institute of Quantitative Social Science at Harvard University. Session organized by Jared Diamond and James Robinson.
2009 Invited Lecture and Discussion Group, "Ideal Free, Prehistoric Settlement of the Northern Channel Islands, Santa Barbara CA, with (Ideal) Despotic Consequences." (AGUA) Associated Graduate Students, University of Arizona, Tucson.
2009 Invited Panel Discussant: "The residues of human decisions: Archaeological applications of behavioral ecology." Theoretical Archaeology Group (TAG) meeting. Stanford Archaeology Center, Stanford University.
2009 “Ideal free prehistoric settlement of the Northern Channel Islands (Santa Barbara, CA) and the evolution of social inequality.” John Phelps Taft Lecture, University of Cincinnati.
2009 “Confirmation of ideal free settlement of the Northern Channel Islands using quantified environmental information and Bayesian analysis to understand habitat suitability.” Talk prepared for the symposium, Quantitative Analysis in Environmental Anthropology, American Anthropological Association meetings, Philadelphia, PA.
2010 "Optimal foraging and beyond." Invited talk for the workshop: Our Way to Europe. Culture-Environment Interaction and Human Mobility in the Late Quaternary: What would a good anthropological model of mobility look like?” University of Cologne, Germany.
2010 Consultant on the selection of leadership for an Independent Junior Research Group at the Max Planck Institute of Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig, Germany (trips in February & again in June).
2010 "The Ideal Despotic consequences of Ideal Free, prehistoric settlement of the Northern Channel Islands of California." Invited talk, Society for the Advancement of Behavioral Economics (SABE) meetings, San Diego, CA.
2010 "Behavioral ecology models of habitat in-fill and the evolution of prehistoric despotism." Invited talk, UCLA Center for Behavior, Evolution and Culture (BEC), Los Angeles, CA.
2011 "The despotic consequences of Northern Channel Islands settlement history." Invited speaker, University of Washington, NSF IGERT, Model-based approaches to biological & cultural evolution, Seattle, WA.
2011 Invited participant, Ernst Strüngmann Forum on "Cognitive Search: Evolution, Algorithms, and the Brain. Frankfurt, Germany.
2011 Discussant, Transforming Biocultural and Ecological Perspectives in Anthropology: The Legacies of R. Brooke Thomas. American Anthropological Association meetings, Montreal, Canada.
2012 "Behavioral and population ecology explorations of the evolution of chiefdoms and states." Invited presentation, Workshop on the Coevolution of Institutions and Behaviors. Santa Fe Institute, Santa Fe, NM.
2012 "Three research traditions in evolutionary anthropology and population ecology with the potential to aid us in understanding the evolution of social complexity." Invited paper for the workshop, Towards a Formal Theory for the Evolution of Human Social Complexity. National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis (NIMBioS), University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN.
2012 "Household-level storage and population-level consequences in a temperate zone, agrarian production system." Invited talk, Workshop on Storage, Amerind Foundation, Tucson, Arizona.
2012 "The exchequer’s guide to revenue in the agrarian state.” Talk presented to the Department of Anthropology, The Pennsylvania State University, College Park, PA.
2012 "30 years on: Archaeology and behavioral ecology in the Great Basin (Parts ! & 2)." Invited Discussant, 33rd Great Basin Anthropological Conference, Stateline, NV.
2012 "Test of the Boserup hypothesis using a meta-analysis of milpa maize yields in Central America" (with Luis Pacheco-Cobos and Mark Grote). Paper delivered in the session, Ecological Anthropology 2012, American Anthropological Association Annual Meeting, San Francisco.