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Andy I.R. Herries

Head of Department of Archaeology and History, La Trobe University

I have a BSc in Archaeological Science, an MSc in Geoarchaeology (cave and karst geology) and a PhD in Geochronology (palaeomagnetism) and Palaeoanthropology. I have published widely in the areas of early hominin evolution and modern human origins as well as the use of magnetic methods of analysis on archaeological and fossil bearing sites, notably caves. My focus is on providing an chronological framework for human evolution as well as understanding the use of fire in the hominin record. I currently work throughout Africa and in Bulgaria, China and Australia.

I currently a Professor and Head of Department of Archaeology and History at La Trobe University in Melbourne, Australia. I am also the director of The Australian Archaeomagnetism Laboratory. The lab is a first of its kind in Australia and is designed to conduct magnetic methods of analysis (palaeomagnetic, rock magnetic, environmental magnetic) on fossil and archaeological bearing sites and materials.

I run a Paleoanthropology Field School and direct excavations at the hominin site of Drimolen, as well as at the Acheulian to Middle Stone Age site of Amanzi Springs in South Africa. Both are funded by Australian Research Council Discovery Grant. In 2015 my team at Drimolen discovered the world's oldest Homo erectus.


  • –present
    ARC Research Fellow in Human Origins and Geochronology, La Trobe University


  • 2003 
    University of Liverpool, PhD
  • 1998 
    University of Liverpool, MSc in Geoarchaeology
  • 1997 
    University of Liverpool, BSc in Archaeological Science

Grants and Contracts

  • 2012
    An Integrated Paleoscape Model for the Pleistocene of the South Coast of S. Africa.
    Senior Scientist
    Funding Source:
    National Science Foundation (USA)
  • 2011
    A mass spectrometer to analyse records of Australia's climate, soil and groundwater history
    Funding Source:
  • 2009
    Cultural change in its environmental context in the Mediterranean Basin
    Funding Source:
  • 2008
    The Late Pleistocene Peopling of East Asia and Associated Climate-Environment History
    CI and Research Fellow
    Funding Source:
    Australian Research Council

Research Areas

  • Archaeology Of Asia, Africa And The Americas (210103)
  • Magnetism And Palaeomagnetism (040406)
  • Geochronology (040303)
  • Archaeological Science (210102)