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Briana Pobiner PhD
This weeks guest is super interesting. Briana Pobiner is a paleoanthropologist whose research centers on the evolution of human diet with a focus on meat-eating. Briana has a BA from Bryn Mawr College, where she created her own major called Evolutionary Studies. Then she completed a Masters degree followed by her PhD in Anthropology from Rutgers University. Briana is also an Associate Research Professor of Anthropology in the Center for the Advanced Study of Human Paleobiology at the George Washington University.
She has done fieldwork in Kenya, Tanzania, South Africa, and Indonesia and has been supported in her research by the National Geographic Society, the National Science Foundation and the Society for American Archaeology. We discuss some of her favorite field moments including a run in with a white rhino as well as discovering fossil bones that were last touched, butchered and eaten by one of her 1.5-million-year-old ancestors. Since joining the Smithsonian in 2005 to help put together the Hall of Human Origins, in addition to continuing her active field, laboratory, and experimental research programs, she leads the Human Origins Program’s education and outreach efforts which includes managing the Human Origins Program’s public programs, website content, social media, and exhibition volunteer training. Briana has also more recently developed a research program in evolution education and science communication. She is the recipient of the 2021 American Association of Biological Anthropologists and Leakey Foundation Communication and Outreach Award in Honor of Camilla Smith, and a 2021 National Center for Science Education Friend of Darwin award.