70,000 years ago people entered the landmass of Australia, rapidly expanding across the continent and developing complex cultural practices to enable the thriving aboriginal cultures encountered at contact. The people who migrated across this landscape encountered new ecosystems: vast deserts, dense rainforests, and long rocky ridges. How did the people come to spread across this landscape, and what choices did they make as they migrated in unfamiliar territories? My work examines these questions via complex computer simulations, shedding light on the networks of connectivity Aboriginal people developed as they populated
this vacant continent.
Dr. Stefani Crabtree is Assistant Professor in Socio-Environmental Modeling in the Department of Environment and Society at Utah State University and the ASU-SFI Center for Biosocial Complex Systems Fellow at The Santa Fe Institute. She additionally holds external affiliation at three institutions: Research Associate at Crow Canyon Archaeological Center, Fellow at the Centre de Recherches Interdisciplinaires Paris, and Research Associate at the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Australian Biodiversity and Heritage. Her research applies complex systems science modeling methodologies to problems in social science and ecology. Current research topics include the human place in ecosystems worldwide, the ability to use the archaeological past to calibrate our understanding of human resilience, and the feedbacks between ecosystem health and human health. Dr. Crabtree holds two Ph.D.s, one from Washington State University (Anthropology, 2016) and one from the Université de Franche-Comté (Maison des Sciences de l’Homme et l’Environnement, 2017).
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