Research Centre of Human Evolution (RCHE)

Environmental Futures Research Institute, Griffith University

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Researcher by rock art

The Centre is the first centre focused on gaining a deeper understanding of the scale of ancient human migrations and the full story of the origins of the people in the Australasian region. RCHE’s mission is to foster research excellence through multidisciplinary projects that bring together leading Australian and international scholars and institutions in the field of human evolution, focusing on Australia and Southeast Asia. RCHE aims to provide the scientific narrative of the intertwined evolution of humans and landscapes in Australasia. The Centre's work in Australia will be conducted with indigenous communities, with opportunities for Aboriginal people to become involved in scientific research and to educate the next generation of students and young researchers. RCHE’s research themes include: archaeogeochemistry and geochronology; archaeology; genomics; landscape and human co-evolution; paleoanthropology; and rock art research.

Website https://www.griffith.edu.au/environment-planning-architecture/environmental-futures-research-institute/research/human-evolution

Key science sectors

Strengths and capabilities

  • Archaeogeochemistry and geochronology
  • Archaeology
  • Genomics
  • Palaeoanthropology
  • Expertise in rock art research
  • Expertise in human and landscape co-evolution

Facilities and major equipment

  • Laboratory for Optically Stimulated Luminescence dating
  • Laboratory for Electron Spin Resonance Dating (from 2017)
  • Laboratory for ancient DNA analysis

Number of research staff

Upto 20 research staff

Address

Environmental Futures Research Institute, Griffith University, 170 Kessels Road, Nathan, 4111

Lead researchers

Achievements of the centre

  • Direct dating of human fossils, including Homo floresiensis and earliest modern humans in Africa, the Levant, Indonesia and the Philippines
  • Discovering an early ancestor of Homo floresiensis with an age of more than 500,000 years
  • Demonstrating that previous DNA analyses of ancient human fossils in Australia were unreliable

Organisation type

  • University Research Centre

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