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Photo from Philip in a cave

Philip R. Nigst is a Palaeolithic archaeologist who works as a postdoctoral researcher in the Department of Human Evolution. He is primarily interested in hominin behavioural and cultural adaptations during the Middle and Upper Palaeolithic. Currently, his work focuses on the replacement of Neanderthals by modern humans and the Middle to Upper Palaeolithic transition.

He is one of the principal investigators of the Willendorf Project, a research and excavation project at one of the key sites for the Middle to Upper Palaeolithic transition in Europe. This work generates new data on human behaviour, palaeoenvironment, and chronostratigraphy for the time when modern humans replaced Neanderthals. Recently, he started collecting data on the archaeology of modern human dispersal into Europe.

Philip is interested in lithic technology, spatial analysis, and methodological improvements in the study of hominin knapping behaviours. He participated in fieldwork in Morocco, Austria, France, Germany, Italy, and Egypt. He obtained his PhD in late 2009 in the framework of the IMPRS The Leipzig School of Human Origins (Leipzig, Germany).


Department of Human Evolution
Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology
Deutscher Platz 6
D-04103 Leipzig