ESHE Board Elections - 2017

This year, ESHE members will vote on both the regular board members and the board officers. The role of the board is to approve members to the society, make decisions that affect the society and assist in the organization of the annual meetings. The board members must be members of the society and be committed to playing an active role in these tasks.

Board Officers

The board officers, comprising the president, vice president, secretary, treasurer and adjunct secretary work closely together to deliver high quality conferences each year and to maintain the daily functions of the society. While each officer carries out a specific set of duties, many aspects of the roles are currently divided and shared between the current board officers based on expertise, time and need. Board officers serve a 3 year term.

Board Officer Candidates 2017



Jean-Jacques Hublin, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology


I am director of the Dept. of Human Evolution at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany and my research activities primarily relate tothe middle and late Pleistocene hominins. I also teach paleoanthropology at the University of Leiden (Netherlands) and at the Collège de France (Paris).

I am one of founders of the society and its first president. In the past six years I have worked at developing the society, improving its function and organising its annual meetings. If re-elected, I plan to step down at the end of this last mandate. In the coming three years, I would like to ensure a safe and smooth transition to a new leadership for the society. In my view it is critical that ESHE remains an independent European association focused on the dissemination of the best research in the broader field of human evolution and on the support of scientists at the earlier stage of their career.


Wil Roebroeks, Leiden University

As one of the founding members of ESHE it was a great pleasure to create a thriving Europe-based venue uniting academics from a wide range of disciplines under the umbrella of human evolution studies, involving the whole spectrum from graduate students to senior scientists. ESHE’s remit mirrors my own research and teaching: I study the archaeology of early hominins, with a focus on Neanderthals and on the deep history of fire use in the development of the human niche, and am an (ESHE-style) omnivore in terms of the disciplines involved in my projects.

ESHE unites people from different scientific cultures and backgrounds, making for a vibrant society. Working for its success with my colleague board members has been a very rewarding enterprise. I am very happy to run for a last term, in which I will try to contribute to a solid future for ESHE, including a transition to a younger generation of members running our society.


Gerhard Weber, University of Vienna

My research activities focus on the evolution, growth and development of hominids. At the University of Vienna, I am leading the workgroup Virtual Anthropology and the Vienna Micro-CT Lab. The fields in which we currently work are hominin dental variability, the evolution of early modern humans, the reconstruction of fossils, and the transfer of our technology into other areas such as archaeology, orthodontics, and art history. I have also the honour to act as the chairman of the EVAN-Society.

In 2010, I was one of the founding members of the ESHE and acted as a Board Member since then. Like my colleagues, I was excited about the idea of an independent European society concerned with questions of human evolution as a strong sign and representation in the international scientific community. I think that ESHE is a great success and I am still excited to contribute further. For this reason, I would like to apply again to serve on ESHE Board, taking over the treasurer position from the resigning officer.


Marie Soressi, Leiden University

Marie Soressi has held a tenure-track Assistant Professorship at Leiden University in the Netherlands since 2013. She is an archaeologist and has been leading field-work in France since 1998. Her research focuses on the demise of Neandertals and the peopling of Western Europe by anatomically modern humans. She has served as ESHE secretary since the foundation of the society. She strongly believe that  ESHE should maintain its multidisciplinary and international approach to human evolution. At a time when identity is at the core of societal issues in Europe and elsewhere, she also supports the idea that ESHE should engage with the public understanding of human evolution. She is willing to serve as a secretary for the ESHE society for an extra term.

Adj. Secretary

Shannon McPherron, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology

I am a Paleolithic archaeologist in the Dept. of Human Evolution at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany. I am one of the founding board members of the society, I created the ESHE web site, and in 2014 I was elected a board officer. Since its creation, I have worked each year to improve the web site and the on-line database that helps us run both the web site and the society.  I have also worked each year to help put together the annual meeting on both a technical and practical side. If re-elected, I will continue to maintain the web site and its database, to bring improvements to the web site, and to work with the board to ensure the smooth running of the annual meeting and of the society.

Regular Board Members

The regular members of the board play an important part in the function of the society and allow us to make decisions that affect the society by taking a wide range of perspectives into account. Board members serve a 2 year term. In order for this to work, board members must be able to attend regular meetings via Internet video conferencing and it is highly preferable that they are also in attendance at the Annual Meetings, where the board has the chance to meet in person. Please keep this in mind when applying for a position as a board member.

Board Member Candidates 2017

Philipp Gunz

I am a physical anthropologist with a PhD from the University of Vienna, and I study the evolution of human development at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig. As one of the founding members of ESHE I took on many bureaucratic responsibilities related to ESHE's bylaws and protocols. For the last seven years I have also been responsible for compiling the abstract volume, and I have played an active part in the core group organising the yearly conference. I am very proud of the positive impact ESHE has had on our field in Europe and abroad. I am running for re-election as a board member because I want to actively contribute to the continuing success of ESHE.

Katerina Harvarti

Katerina Harvati is Professor for Paleoanthropology at the Universität Tübingen and the Senckenberg Center for Human Evolution and Paleoenvironments. Her research focuses on human evolution in the Pleistocene, Neanderthal paleobiology and modern human origins, and the application of 3D geometrics methods to paleoanthropology. She has worked extensively in the field, and has directed fieldwork in East Africa and most recently in her native country Greece. Harvati is the recipient of two ERC Grants (Starting Grant ‘Paleoanthropology at the Gates of Europe’, 2012-2016; and Consolidator Grant ‘Human Evolution at the Crossroads’, 2017-2022), both of which focus on the Paleoanthropology of Greece and the Balkans. She currently also is the co-Director of the DFG-funded Center for Advanced Studies in the Humanities ‘Words, Bones, Genes, Tools: Tracking Cultural and Biological Trajectories of the Human Past’. Harvati conducted her University studies at Columbia University, New York, and completed her PhD at the City University of New York (2001). Before moving to Tübingen in 2009, she was Assistant Professor at New York University (2001-04) and a Senior Researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipizig (2004-09). She is a founding member of ESHE and served as board member from 2011-2013 and again from 2015 to present. She has served several times on the ESHE abstract selection committee, as well as on the ESHE Student Poster Prize committee. She is deeply committed to advancing women in Science and especially in the field of Paleoanthropology.

Trine Kellberg Nielsen

I am an archaeologist with a PhD obtained in 2016 from Aarhus University, Denmark, where I am also currently working as postdoctoral researcher. During my studies I have spent time at Leiden University (the Netherlands), Tübingen University and the Senckenberg Institute in Frankfurt (Germany). My research focuses on Neanderthal biogeography with emphasis on understanding drivers and constraints of human dispersal and mobility at high northern latitudes.

I have been a member of ESHE since 2013 and with two exceptions I have attended all annual meetings. I support ESHE’S goal to promote public awareness of the study of human evolution and I highly appreciate its integration of biological and cultural perspectives as well as bridging role between junior and senior researcher. I am particularly committed to encouraging the active integration of early career researchers in the ESHE agenda. I am running as candidate for Regular Board Member 2017 with the aim of actively supporting the organisation of the society and with the added goal to gain insights enabling hosting a future ESHE meeting in Scandinavia.

María Martinón-Torres

María Martinón-Torres, PhD in Medicine and Surgery, MSc in Forensic Anthropology and MPhil in Human Origins is currently Reader at the Anthropology Department of University College of London. Member of the Atapuerca Research Team since 1998 and Research Leader of the Dental Anthropology Group from 2007 to 2015 at the “National Research Center on Human Evolution (CENIEH) in Burgos, Spain, she has research interests in hominin palaeobiology, palaeopathology and the evolutionary scenario of the first Europeans. She has leaded and participated in several international projects related to the study of the hominin dental evidence worlwide like in Dmanisi (Georgia) and China and she has more than 70 publications including books, book chapters and scientific articles in peer-reviewed SCI journals such as Nature, Science, PNAS or Journal of Human Evolution. Her work was highlighted as Top 1% of most cited authors in the field of Social Sciences according to Thomson Reuters Essential Science Indicators.

She is Founding Member of ESHE, acted several times on the ESHE abstract selection committee and on the ESHE Student Poster Prize committee. She acted as Board Member until 2013. Since 2016 she is ESHE Ombudsperson. She is running as candidate for Board Member 2017 and she is motivated to help making ESHE one of the most important and active meeting points of senior and junior scholars in the broad field of human evolution, with great interest in the development of an interdisciplinary and inter-institutional network, including research and training elements.

Karen Ruebens

Karen Ruebens received her PhD from the University of Southampton (UK) in 2012 and has since been working as a postdoctoral researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology (MPI-EVA, Leipzig) and the MONREPOS Archaeological Research Centre for Human Behavioural Evolution (Neuwied). Her research interests are focused on unravelling Neanderthal behaviour through wider-scale comparative lithic analyses. After a maternity break in 2016 she successfully obtained a fellowship through the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Career Restart scheme for a project at MPI-EVA focussing on Middle Palaeolithic projectile technology in Western Europe.

Karen has extensive experience in organising conferences (e.g. initiated the Unravelling the Palaeolithic series in the UK) and has been serving on the ESHE board since 2015. So far, she has been involved mainly in reviewing submissions and organising the Pecha Kucha prize. She is keen on expanding her involvement with ESHE further and is committed to help continue making the annual ESHE meetings into dynamic, innovative occasions with balanced representations of the varied members and fields in the ever-changing discipline that is human evolution.

Geoff Smith

Geoff Smith is a specialist in faunal taphonomy who received his PhD in Palaeolithic Zooarchaeology from University College London (UCL) in 2010. After a 3 year postdoc at MONREPOS Archaeological Research Centre studying the Neanderthal site of Neumark-Nord 2, he successfully obtained DAAD PRIME funding for a collaborative project between University of California Davis and University of Mainz, investigating the African Earlier to Middle Stone Age transition. In September 2017 he joins the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology (Leipzig) to assess hominin subsistence behaviour and site formation across several Middle to Upper Palaeolithic sites. Geoff is also a Visiting Professor at Lanzhou University (China).

He has been a member of ESHE since 2011, actively participating at all annual conferences and was elected a regular board member in 2015. He has been reviewing abstracts for the annual conferences and is responsible for co-ordinating and judging the EHSE poster prize. He would like to expand these duties to help ensure that the ESHE conferences maintain their high academic standards and interdisciplinary nature. He is also committed to providing an approachable voice for more junior members and ensuring and enabling a wide involvement of both PhD students and postdocs.

Andrew Sorensen

I am a member of the Human Origins Group at Leiden University, the Netherlands, and am currently in the final stages of my PhD project that looks into the role fire played in Neandertal lifeways, with special emphasis on identifying evidence of artificial fire making by Palaeolithic peoples. This project has been funded through a competitive ‘PhDs in the Humanities’ grant awarded by the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (NWO). I am looking forward to expanding my investigation of early anthropogenic fire use into the Upper Palaeolithic in my new capacity as a postdoctoral researcher, also at Leiden.

Having attended every ESHE meeting, save the inaugural meeting in Leipzig in 2011, I have had the opportunity to watch the organization grow and thrive over the years. Along with my efforts as a member of the local organizing committee for the upcoming ESHE meeting in Leiden, I hope to be able to further contribute to the organization of the Society in the years to come in an official capacity as a Regular Board Member. Together with my colleagues on the board and the general membership of the Society, I look forward to advancing the fields of Human Evolution, Palaeolithic Archaeology and Palaeoanthropology in both the professional and public spheres, especially among students and early career researchers.

Thomas Terberger

Thomas Terberger has a long lasting experience in research on the Palaeolithic and Mesolithic of Central Europe. Among others he did some studies on the Upper Palaeolthic, especially on the period of the LGM and the Magdalenian, the Late Glacial and Stone Age human remains. More recently he was involved in research on the Palaeolithic site of Schöningen and conducted excavations on the important Mesolithic burial site of Groß Fredenwalde in NE-Germany. He is also engaged in the study of the Bronze Age battle field site of Tollense valley in northern Germany. Since 2013 he is affiliated to the Lower Saxony State Office for Cultural Heritage and is engaged in teaching at Göttingen University.

In the last years Thomas Terberger supported ESHE as the treasurer. The society and the annual meetings are a great success for him and in the coming years he would like to further support this project with his experience and advice in the aspects of administration and strategy.