About me

I am currently a post-doctoral researcher at the Interdisciplinary Center for Archaeology and Evolution of Human Behaviour (ICArEHB) at the Universidade do Algarve, Portugal (view my ICArEHB profile page here). My research interests are lithic technology and landscape use in the Southern African Stone Age, with a particular focus on Middle Stone Age behavioural variability and past human adaptations to arid environments. I have led two projects in the Cederberg and Tankwa Karoo regions of South Africa studying surface lithic assemblages.

My PhD research at the University of Cambridge (2013-2018) investigated variability in lithic and landscape use behaviour in the Tankwa Karoo (Western/Northern Cape South Africa) supervised by Dr Philip Nigst and funded by an AHRC Doctoral Award. My Masters research at the University of Cape Town (2011-2013) studied Stone Age landscape use in the Olifants River Valley (Western Cape, South Africa), supervised by Prof. John Parkington.

Other research projects I have been involved with recently include EvHe: Origens e Evolução da Cognição Humana e o impacto da ecologia costeira no SW Ibérico (PI: Prof. Nuno Bicho; FCT), SeedCorn (PI: Dr Jo Rowland, University of Edinburgh; AHRC) and REAL: Resilience in East African Landscapes (PI: Anna Shoemaker, Prof. Paul Lane, University of Uppsala; Marie Curie Actions Innovative Training Network).

I offer editorial services for non-native English-speaking Early Career Researchers; please contact me for more information.

About the TANKwA Project

The project TANKwA uses innovative digital archaeological methods to investigate human technological adaptations to arid regions during the Middle Stone Age – a critical period of early human anatomical and behavioural development. Specifically, this will focus on a new late MSA technological variant observed in the Tankwa Karoo region of South Africa which uses Nubian technology, a distinctive Levallois method of stone point production more commonly seen in MSA contexts in North Africa, the Levant and Arabia. Using cutting-edge digital Geometric Morphometric techniques, this research will establish a novel method for studying Nubian technology and lithic points, testing the hypothesis that this technology was an adaptive response to the challenges facing hunter-gatherers in an arid environment. The recently discovered open-air site of Tweefontein has a large artefact assemblage offering the ideal opportunity to characterise this technology, complemented by museum study of other South African Karoo sites. The novel approach applied will generate replicable quantitative data that allows the contextualisation of Nubian technology both in the southern African archaeological record and globally, establishing the first inter-regional comparison between Nubian technology in the Levant and South Africa.

About the project funding

TANKwA is funded by the European Union Horizon 2020 Framework under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Grant Agreement No. 891917.

My MCSA Fellowship is hosted by the Universidade do Algarve, supervised by Dr João Cascalheira, with a planned secondment to the Hebrew University of Jerusalem Computational Archaeological Laboratory, led by Prof. Leore Grosman. The TANKwA project runs from June 2020 to June 2022.

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