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Shannon McPherron

Senior Scientist (W2) - Research Group Leader

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

phone: 0049 (0) 341 3550 363
fax: 0049 (0) 341 3550 399
e-mail: mcpherroneva.mpgde

Research Interests


Research Interests

Shannon McPherron is a Paleolithic archaeologist primarily interested in the evolution of hominin cultural abilities from the origins of stone tool use through to the dispersal of modern humans.  He has excavated a number of Paleolithic sites and is currently involved in field projects in central Germany (Ranis), Bulgaria (Bacho Kiro), Morocco (Jebel Irhoud), and Ethiopia (Dikika and Mille-Logia Research Projects).  Work is on-going on the analysis and publication of several other sites including Jonzac, Roc de Marsal, Pech de l’Azé IV, and Abri Peyrony (all in France). The French projects are generating new data on hominin adaptations just prior to the arrival of modern humans, and the African projects are generating new data on the origins of stone tool use (Dikika) and on the Middle Stone Age (Dikika, Irhoud, and Rhafas) at or soon after the appearance of modern humans. McPherron has emphasized the development of computer assisted techniques for better documenting excavation.  He is also interested in the development of methods for the recognition and documentation of site formation processes. McPherron is interested in lithic technology and has published on the significance of variability in handaxes in both the Lower and Middle Paleolithic.


"Scientific honesty and the observance of the principle of good scientific practice are essential in all scientific work which seeks to expand our knowledge and which is intended to earn respect from the public."
(Rules of Good Scientific Practice, MPS, 2009)

Ombudsperson: Shannon McPherron
Vice Ombudsperson: Mark Stoneking

As elected Ombudsperson and Vice Ombudsperson of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, we stand at your disposal in case you are experiencing or observing any kind of scientific misconduct, or if you need advice on the subject of good scientific practice.

Scientific misconduct includes:

  • false statements
  • infringement of intellectual property
  • impairment of the research work of others
  • joint accountability

More information is provided in the following brochure:

Rules of Good Scientific Practice
March 20th, 2009
[pdf - English][pdf - German]

Rules of Procedure in Case of Suspected Scientific Misconduct
November 24th, 2000
[pdf - English][pdf - German]

Guidelines for the Deployment of Ombudspersons
February 16th, 2006
[pdf - English][pdf - German]


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