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Dr Isabelle De Groote
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Natural History Museum
Cromwell Road
London
SW7 5BD

Research

Project name: 

Cemeteries and Sedentism (Leverhulme) in collaboration with Oxford University

Post-doctoral Research Assistant

The aim of the project is to document apparent changes in subsistence patterns observed at around 13,000 years ago and marked by a major sedimentary boundary in a number of caves in Morocco. This will be the first systematic study of the lifestyles of Iberomaurusian foragers in the Maghreb and investigations will focus on Taforalt Cave, one of the richest Epipalaeolithic cemeteries in North Africa.

My role in this project is assess changes in human mobility, health and diet from skeletal material from Taforalt and other contemporaneous sites in North West Africa.

 

Interests

In general my research interest is human evolution, with a focus on modern human diversity and the emergence, evolution, and disappearance of Neanderthals, and the related question of the origins of anatomically and behaviorally modern humans. Currently, my research focuses on two topics: 1) studying differences in post-cranial morphology between modern human populations and the influences of climate, activity and heredity; and 2) applying models based on modern human diversity in order to contextualise the differences observed between Neanderthals and early modern humans. Through my research into post-cranial anatomy, I am also interested in the ontogeny of human skeletal diversity and the relationships between activity, environment and growth patterns.

Biography

Employment history

Jan 2012-        Post-doctoral research assistant (Calleva Foundation funded).

THE NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM with Dr Louise Humphrey (Human Origins Group, Department of Palaeontology)                       

This project has the goal to analyse and interpret the cemetery from Taforalt Cave, Morocco. 

 

Sep-Dec ’11    Post-doctoral researcher (NHM funded).

THE NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM with Prof Chris Stringer (Human Origins Group, Department of Palaeontology)

                        

Historical and morphological study of the unpublished Middle and Upper Palaeolithic human remains from Sir Arthur Keith’s recently discovered private skeletal collection. The discovered materials include the Natufian material from Shukbah Cave (the type-site of the Natufian) and Neanderthal and early modern human material from both Shukbah and El Wad caves with associated dates.

 

2009-2011    Post-doctoral research assistant (Leverhulme funded).   

THE NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM with Dr Louise Humphrey (Human Origins group, Department of Palaeontology)                     

Studying skeletal and dental characters for the assessment of changes in human mobility, health and diet during the Mesolithic-Neolithic transition in response to climatic and subsistence changes in North West Africa.

Spring 2009     Guest Lecturer (Faculty of Science, engineering and Computing) 

KINGSTON UNIVERSITY

Skeletal Anatomy lectures, labs and assessment (2nd and 3rd year Forensic Sciences)

 

2008-2009         Part-time lecturer and part-time curator (Department of Anthropology)     

UNIVERSITY COLLEGE LONDON

Course organisation and delivery of lectures, labs and assessment: Introduction to Biological Anthropology, Palaeoanthropology (undergraduate and MSc). Examination, administration and attendance of staff meetings. Identification and cataloguing of all human and other primate remains as well as dealing with repatriations. Refurbishment of the collection room.

 

2007           Guest Lecturer (Department of Life Sciences)        

ROEHAMPTON UNIVERSITY

Primate morphology lecture, lab teaching, assessment.

 

2004-2008    Teaching Assistant (Department of Anthropology)          

UNIVERSITY COLLEGE LONDON

Tutorial, lecture and laboratory teaching: Introduction to Anthropology, Palaeoanthropology, and Statistics and Research Methods for Anthropologists, Biological Anthropology dissertations tutor. Essay Marking and lab reports, student administration.

 

Qualifications

University College London, UK
Ph.D. in Anthropology Awarded November 2008
Dissertation: A comprehensive analysis of long bone curvature in Neanderthals and modern humans using 3D morphometrics

Roehampton University, UK
1st class BSc in Anthropology Awarded 2004
Honours Thesis: Women and power in Mbour, Senegal

University of Victoria, British Columbia. Canada
B.A. Anthropology 3rd year Awarded 2001
Accepted as 3rd year Anthropology student transfer to Roehampton

Hogeschool, Gent, Belgium
B.A. Education - Music. Awarded 2000
Honours Thesis: Music and Culture of the Canadian North West Coast

Professional Roles

Awards and Prizes

2012                Piltdown Centenery – Palaeontology Investment Fund

(£512) as Collaborator with Silvia Bello (NHM), Adrian Evans (Bradford University) and Chris Stringer (NHM).

Specialist equipment grant to apply laser confocal microscopy to the “making of Piltdown”. 

 

2011                Portable X-Ray – Palaeontology Investment Fund

(£9417) as Co-PI with Louise Humphrey (Human Origins Group, Natural History Museum, London).

Equipment grant to purchase a portable x-ray machine and digital sensor.

 

2011                Digging through Sir Arthur Keith’s Legacy – Palaeontology Investment Fund

(£9618) as Co-PI with Chris Stringer (Human Origins Group, Natural History Museum, London).

Three month project funding: Includes salary, research costs and travel budget.

 

2010                 NERC Radiocarbon Application - NERC

(no monetary value) as collaborator with Prof Nick Barton (Oxford University), Prof Jalil Abouzzouggar (INSAP, Morocco), Dr Louise Humphrey (NHM)

Dating of the Epipalaeolithic Iberomaurusian Cemetery at Taforalt Cave, Northeast Morocco. Eight dates were awarded on human bone.

 

2008         UCL FUTURES GRANT

(£9.991) as Co-PI with Christophe Soligo (Dept. of Anthropology, UCL).

Weidenreich’s Legacy: A project casting the invaluable and rare Homo erectus casts and creating an exposition on Weidenreich’s work.

 

2008            UCL Conference Fund Grant

(£896) Travel and subsistence for International Conference (AAPA and Palaeoanthroplogy Society meetings).

 

2007                Jane Moore Prize Winner for best student presentation

(£50) British Association of Biological Anthropologists and Osteoarchaeologists.

 

2007                UCL Conference Fund Grant

(£173) Travel and subsistence for BABAO Conference.

 

2006                Wenner Gren Foundation Dissertation Fieldwork Grant

(US$14.825) PhD research grant covering equipment, bench fees, travel and subsistence for data collection on fossil and comparative material.

 

2006                Synthesys – European Union

(EUR 3.700) Travel, subsistence and bench fees for data collection on fossil and comparative collections at the Natural History Museums in Vienna, Paris and Brussels.

 

2006                UCL Alumni Grant

(£1.000) Tuition fees and maintenance

 

2006                Leakey Trust

(£500) Travel, subsistence and bench fees in Museum für Ur- und Frühgeschichte Thüringen , Germany, Dolni Vestonice and Brno, Czech Republic.

 

2005                Ruggles-Gates

£(1.000) Travel, subsistence and bench fees at the National Musuem for Natural History, Peabody Museum and the Smithsonian, USA for data collections of fossil and comparative collections.

 

2005                UCL Departmental of Anthropology Post-Graduate Grant

(£3.180) Tuition fees

                       

2005                UCL Graduate School Research Grant

(£800) Travel, subsistence and bench fees for the Musée Nationale d’Histoire Naturelle, France.

 

Enabling Activity

03/2012           Career fair: Roehampton University. Student science career advisor.

03/2012           Science fair – NHM: School events to encourage school children to take up science in school and consider science careers.

09/2011           Science Night: Public event at the Natural History museum bringing science to the public. Large Museum-wide EU funded event

07/2010           Translation and recording of the history of the Institut de Paléontologie Humaine. Collaboration with Amélie Vialet – Curator.

04/2010           Radio contribution on using surface scanning and geometric morphometrics in Palaeoanthropology. Paris Radio 1. Collaboration with Amélie Vialet – curator of the Institut de Paléontologie Humaine .

2009-ongoing Nature Live Contributor: Lectures and information sessions with museum visitors. The Natural History Museum. School visit science contributor.

 

 

Media work

March 2012     Contributor to Material World (Radio 4), Science in Action (World Service), BBC News, BBC web content video, BBC World News Live.

 

Since 08/11     Scientific advisor for Prehistoric Autopsy: a new BBC mini-series on human evolutionary functional morphology

 

Since 2011      New Scientist (press contributor)

 

Since 2010      The Guardian, The Times (press contributor)

 

Reviewer

Since 2010      Reviewer of “Biology Letters” – Royal Society Publishing

Since 2012      The Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council 

 

Professional Memberships

American Association of Physical Anthropologists

British Association for Biological Anthropology and Osteoarchaeology

Paleoanthropology Society

Société d’Anthropologie de Paris

European Society for Human Evolution

Higher Education Academy

Publications

Journal Articles

 

De Groote, I. (in prep) Variation in femoral curvature in modern humans. To be submitted to American Journal of Physical Anthropology.

 

De Groote, I., Humphrey, L. (in review) Body Mass estimation using the first metatarsal in Middle and Upper Paleolithic populations. Journal of Human Evolution.

 

De Groote, I. (accepted) The Neanderthal Lower Arm. Journal of Human Evolution.

 

De Groote, I., Humphrey, L.T. (In press). Body Mass and Stature Estimation Based on the First Metatarsal. Submitted to American Journal of Physical Anthropology.

 

De Groote, I. (in press) Femoral Curvature in Neanderthals and Modern Humans. Journal of Human Evolution.

 

De Groote, I., Aiello, L.C. (2011) Letter to the Editor: Response to Deane and Kremer’s comment: 3D, or not to 3D. American Journal of Physical Anthropology, Volume 144, Issue 3, pp. 498-499.

 

De Groote, I., Lockwood, C.A., Aiello, L. C. (2010) A new method for measuring long bone curvature using 3D landmarks and semi-landmarks.  American Journal of Physical Anthropology, Volume 141, Issue 4, pp. 658-664

 

Book Reviews

 

Kovarovic, K. and De Groote, I. (2009) Book Review: Acts of the XIVth UISPP Congress, University of Liège, Belgium, 2-8 September 2001. Section 3: Paleoecology. General Sessions and Posters. Paleoanthropology 2009: 44-45.

 

De Groote, I. (2007) Book review: Paleontological Data Analysis. Journal of Human Evolution, Volume 53, Issue 6, December 2007, Pages 762-763

 

 

Presentations and Published Abstracts:

 

De Groote, I., Humphrey, L. (2011) Body Mass and Stature Estimation Based on the First Metatarsal. To be presented at the Eightieth American Association of Physical Anthropology meetings, Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA.

 

De Groote, I. and Humphrey, L. (2010) Evulsion practices among the Iberomaurusian. Presented at the 12th Annual British Association for Biological Anthropology and Osteoarchaeology.

 

R.N.E. Barton, Bouzouggar, A.,  Collcutt, S.N., Humphrey, L Higham, T , Schwenninger, J-L., Turner, E., Blockley, S., Candy, I., Oh, A., Clark-Balzan, L., Parfitt, S., White, D., Vaughan, A., Hogue, J., De Groote, I. , Bell, M.G. and V. Taylor (2010). Climate change and cultural transitions over the last 160.000 years in Northwest Africa. Presented at Africa from Stage Six to Two: Population Dynamics and Palaeoenvironments.

 

De Groote, I., C. A. Lockwood. (2010) An investigation of long bone curvature in Neanderthals and modern humans: femur, ulna and radius. Published in Abstracts of the Palaeoanthropology Society meeting, 2009.Presented at the Paleoanthropology Society 2009 Meeting.

 

De Groote, I. (2009) An investigation of long bone curvature in modern human populations: femur, ulna and radius. American Journal of Physical Anthropology. Volume 138, Issue S48, p. 116. Presented at the 78th American Association of Physical Anthropology meetings, Chicago.

 

De Groote, I. (2007) Variation in femoral curvature in modern humans. Presented at the University College London Postgraduate Student Conference.

 

De Groote, I. (2007) Variation in femoral curvature in modern humans. Presented at the 9th Annual British Association for Biological Anthropology and Osteoarchaeology.

 

De Groote I., Lockwood, C.A., Aiello, L. C. (2006) Long bone curvature in Neanderthals and modern humans: A new method for measuring long bone curvature using 3D landmarks and semilandmarks. American Journal of Physical Anthropology Volume 134, Issue S42, p. 82. Presented at the 76th American Association of Physical Anthropology meetings, Milwaukee.

 

De Groote I. (2006) A new method for quantifying long bone curvature. Presented at the University College London Postgraduate Student Conference.