My first experience with paleontology came while I was an undergraduate at the University of California, Berkeley. There I worked on North American fossils, participated in fieldwork in the Afar Region of Ethiopia, and started my own paleontological project in the United Arab Emirates. I went on to do a PhD on fossil bovids (antelopes) with Elisabeth Vrba at Yale University, and since that time my collaborations in African projects have expanded to include work with several international paleontological teams in Ethiopia, Kenya, and Tanzania. I also directed fieldwork in Late Miocene sediments of Abu Dhabi (see here) and I currently lead an interdisciplinary team conducting yearly fieldwork in the Upper Atbara Valley of eastern Sudan. Since my PhD work, I have a had a long-term interest in the evolution of antelopes (Bovidae), as studied from both modern and fossil perspectives. The approaches I employ include comparative morphology, phylogenetics (morphology & molecules), geometric morphometrics, community structure, stable isotope analysis, and ancient DNA.
Check out my publications on my Google Scholar profile
I have been an NSF international postdoc at the iPHEP in Poitiers, a Gerstner Scholar at the AMNH in New York, and a Leibniz-DAAD fellow at the MfN in Berlin. I’ve been a research scientist at the Museum für Naturkunde since 2013, senior scientist since 2018, and Privat Dozent (extended faculty) at the Institute of Biology and Biochemistry at the University of Potsdam since 2020.
(photo by Chad Cohen)