Sometime during the Middle Stone Age, in sub-Saharan Africa, Homo sapiens evolved biologically, behaviourally and cognitively. My research agenda is geared towards the generation of knowledge about all three of these evolutionary processes in the southern African context and how they relate to each other. The long-term aim is to create an integrated, detailed and holistic understanding of the evolution of our species in the region since about 500 000 years ago.
The Palaeo-TrACKS (Tracing Ancient Cognition and Knowledge Systems through the Stone Age) Research Programme is funded through an African Origins Platform Grant from the National Research Foundation of South Africa, and is managed in four distinct research legs:
Micro-TrACKS (Tracing Ancient Cognition and Knowledge Systems through Micro-methods)
Geno-TrACKS (Tracing Stone Age Population History through DNA)
Mind-TrACKS (Tracing Ancient Cognition through Stone Age Technologies)
TrACKS on the Highveld (Tracing Hominin/Human Presence on the trans-Vaal Highveld Grassland Bioregion during the Stone Age)
All four tracks are intimately linked with the research programmes of local and international collaborators. Together we aim to explore: a) the Stone Age occupational history of southern Africa, b) behavioural and cognitive evolutionary trends during the Stone Age, and c) indigenous knowledge systems associated with the Middle and Later Stone Ages of southern Africa.
Google Scholar Profile