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Anthropological Research at OSU

Our faculty work in every continent, and study the human experience in both prehistoric and modern contexts.  They work closely with Ohio State University students. Follow these links to read more about Undergraduate and Graduate research

Much of the research productivity in the Department of Anthropology derives from sustained, long-term research programs directed by individual faculty who collaborate with other faculty, both from Ohio State University and other institutions, nationally and internationally.  This collaborative approach to research is central to framing productivity as it relates to research grants, fieldwork, laboratory investigation, and publication.  The research programs reflect the central foci on ecology, evolution, foodways, migration and change, and health in the three subdisciplines, physical anthropology, archaeology, and cultural anthropology.

You can keep up to date with research of students and faculty on ResearchGate, including recent publications and research projects.

Over the last decade, faculty in the Department of Anthropology at Ohio State have been awarded 60 grants from the National Science Foundation (44), National Geographic Society (7), and the Wenner-Gren Foundation (9) to support research in Anthropology. Research awards to Department of Anthropology faculty over the past decade have included:

2022 Mark Moritz (PI), Nicholas Kawa, Alison Bennett, Elizabeth Newton, Yolanda Zepeda, Charlene Brenner, Rachel Kajfez, Teresa Johnson, David Sovic, Ethan Rivera IGE: Training Scientists to Tackle Grand Challenge Societal Problems through Convergent Action in Transdisciplinary Teams, National Science Foundation (DGE-2224769). 

2022 Mark Moritz (PI) and Nicholas C. Kawa (co-PI). “Training Scientists to Tackle Grand Challenge Societal Problems through Convergetn Action in Transdisciplinary Teams.” National Science Foundation.

2020 Mark Moritz (PI), Rebecca Garabed, Ian Hamilton, Jason Thomas National Science Foundation Cultural Anthropology Program, Modeling Coupled Herd and Household Dynamics in Pastoral Systems, National Science Foundation (BCS-1946258).

2020 Mark Moritz (PI), Lawrence Ball, Hadi Al Hikmani, Ian M. Hamilton, Andrew Spalton, An Interdisciplinary Study of Grazing Pressure in the Dhofar Mountains of Oman, Royal Geographical Society (RGS) Thesiger Oman International Fellowship  (THES 04.20.).

2020  Clark Larsen. Research and Creative Expression Innovator: One of 150 faculty identified in its 150 Years of Innovation, The Ohio State University.

2020  Clark Larsen. Cozzarelli Prize, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Sciences.

2019. Nicholas C. Kawa (PI). “Waste or Resource? The Contested Use of Human Excreta in Midwestern Agriculture.” Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research

2018-23.  Clark Larsen, Marin A. Pilloud, PI, Mehmet Somel, Christopher J. Knüsel. National Science Foundation. “Creation, Maintenance, and Mobility of Neolithic Communities in Central Anatolia.” ($275,846)

2016 Joy McCorriston (PI) and Mark Moritz (co-PI). Pastoral Territoriality as a Dynamic Coupled System.  National Science Foundation Award.

2016 Anna Willow (PI). Contested Developments and Cumulative Effects: Understanding Diverse Responses to Energy Resource Development in British Columbia’s Peace River Region. Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research.

2016  Sean Downey (PI). CAREER: Analyzing the Emergence of a Complex Swidden Management System in the Toledo District, Belize  National Science Foundation Award (# BCS-1553875).

2015 Robert Cook (co-PI) Tlaxcalla Archaeology Project: Homes, Terraces, and Government in the Late Postclassic. National Science Foundation Award.

2015 Mark Moritz (PI). RAPID: Studying the Effects of Disturbance in a Complex Socioecological System. National Science Foundation Award # BCS-1600221.

2015 Mark Moritz (PI). EAGER: Modeling Coupled Herd and Household Dynamics in Pastoral Systems. National Science Foundation Award BCS-1546061.

2015 Barbara Piperata (PI). Tracking the Nutrition Transition in Rural Amazonia: a longitudinal and comparative approach. Fulbright Scholar Award.

2014 W. Scott McGraw (co-PI). Collaborative Research: Biomechanical significance of bone material variation in the primate locomotor skeleton. National Science Foundation Award BCS # 1440278.

2014 Mark Moritz (PI). CNH: Exploring social, ecological, and hydrological regime shifts in the Logone Floodplain, Cameroon. National Science Foundation Award # BCS-1211986.

2014 Mark Moritz (co-PI). CEAH FY14 Modeling Project, United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

2014 Mark Hubbe (co-PI). Collaborative Research: The Emergence of Inequality in the Atacama Oases. National Science Foundation Award # 1359644.

2014 Kristen Gremillion (co-PI). Tracking the Origins of an Adaptive Trait Syndrome with Ancient DNA.  National Science Foundation Award.

2014 Clark Larsen (co-PI). Coming Together: Neolithic Village Life at Catalhoyuk, Turkey. National Geographic Society Award.

2012 Julie Field (co-PI). Investigating the Subsistence Transition in Post-Lapita Fiji (2500-1500 years BP).  National Science Foundation Award # BCS-1216330.

2012 Anna Willow (PI) The Politics of Environmental Alliance: A Multi-sited Ethnography of the Boreal Leadership Council. Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research.

2011 Robert Cook (PI) The Fort Ancient Regional Movement (FARM) Project.  National Science Foundation Award.

2011 Richard Yerkes (co-PI). IRES: Collaboration and Mentorship Between US, Hungarian, and Greek Researchers in the Origins and Development of Prehistoric European Villages. National Science Foundation OISE, International Research Experiences for Students.

2011 Richard Yerkes (co-PI). ICRG: Early Village Social Dynamics: Prehistoric Settlement Nucleation On The Great Hungarian Plain. Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research, International Collaborative Research Grant.

2010 Mark Moritz (co-PI). EEID: Livestock Movements and Disease Epidemiology in the Chad Basin. National Science Foundation Award # DEB-1015908

2010 Dawn Kitchen (co-PI). Vocal & social behavior in Mexican hybrid black x mantled howler monkeys. National Science Foundation Award.

2009 W. Scott McGraw (co-PI). Functional and ecological correlates of bone material variation in cercopithecoid mandibles. National Science Foundation Award # BCS 0921770.

2009 Richard Yerkes (co-PI). Early Village Social Dynamics: Prehistoric Settlement Nucleation on the Great Hungarian Plain. National Science Foundation Award # BCS-0911336.

2009 Clark Larsen (co-PI). Children of the Neolithic: Growth, Development, and Adaptation at Çatalhöyük, Turkey. National Geographic Society Award.


In the last decade, anthropology faculty have published over 250 research articles in peer-reviewed journals.  These include the following journals :

American Antiquity
American Historical Review
American Journal of Physical Anthropology
Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology
Current Anthropology
Earth Science Review
Ecology Letters
Evolutionary Anthropology
Human Ecology
Human Organization
Journal of Archaeological Science
Journal of Forensic Sciences
Journal of Human Evolution
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences


In the last decades, anthropology faculty have published over 30 books.

Jeffrey Cohen

Conflict, Insecurity and Mobility (Cohen and Sirkeci)
Migration and Remittances (Sirkeci and Cohen)
Cooperation and Community (Cohen)
Economic Development (Cohen and Dannhaeuser)
The Culture of Migration in Southern Mexico (Cohen)
Eating Soup without a Spoon (Cohen)


Robert Cook

Sunwatch (Cook)


Douglas Crews

Human Senescence (Crews)
Biological Anthropology and Aging (Crews and Garruto)


Julie Field

Abundance and Resilience (Field)


Kristen Gremillion

Ancestral Appetites (Gremillion)
People, Plants, and Landscapes (Gremillion)


Debbie Guatelli-Steinberg

What Teeth Reveal about Human Evolution (Guatelli-Steinberg)


Nicholas Kawa

Amazonia in the Anthropocene (Kawa)


Clark Larsen

Our Origins (Larsen)
Essentials of Physical Anthropology (Larsen)
Bioarchaeology (Larsen)
Bioarchaeology of Spanish Florida (Larsen)
Human Origins (Larsen and Matter)
Skeletons in Our Closet (Larsen)
In the Wake of Contact (Larsen and Milner)
Bioarchaeology of the Human Head (Bonogofsky and Larsen)


Joy McCorriston

Pilgrimage and Household in the Ancient Near East (McCorriston)


W. Scott McGraw

Monkeys of the Tai Forest (McGraw and Zuberbuhler)


Jeffrey McKee

Understanding Human Evolution (McKee, Poirier, McGraw)
Sparing Nature (McKee)
The Riddled Chain (McKee)


Anna Willow

Strong Hearts, Native Lands (Willow)
The Mushgigamongsebe District (Nesper, Willow, and King)


Richard Yerkes

Prehistoric Life on the Mississippi Floodplain (Yerkes)
Written in Stone (Kardulias and Yerkes