Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Open House for prospective grad students at Purdue University

Considering a PhD in anthropology? If you're in the Midwest consider swinging by Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana to attend the Purdue Anthropology Graduate Program Open House on November 11, 2011. Purdue is the home of some really great primatology research by Melissa Remis and her students, including Brandi Wren who as a graduate student started a fantastic primatological field school in South Africa.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Job updates

If you are actively on the market or just indulging in some good old-fashioned voyeurism, be sure to keep tabs on the Physical Anthropology Job Wiki. There are 25 jobs posted that are still in play. I don't think it's an exhaustive list, so I encourage BANDITs to provide updates.

Collaborative Research Travel Grants

The Burroughs Wellcome Trust announces its Collaborative Research Travel Grants, awards up to $15,000 in support for researchers to travel either domestically or internationally to a laboratory to acquire a new research technique, to facilitate a collaboration, or to attend a laboratory/lecture course (but not a conference). Applicants must hold a Ph.D. or be currently studying in a Ph.D. program. Deadline: Dec. 1, 2011, 4pm EST, electronic applications only

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Mammals Suck, literally...

Kudos to Dr. Katie Hinde (Human Evolutionary Biology, Harvard) for her wonderful new blog, Mammals Suck...Milk!. Katie says: "My goal for this blog is to showcase new research in milk science (so please send me announcements of your papers when they are published), synthesize emerging results into short science pieces, and to announce symposia and conferences of interest to folks studying mother's milk (or father's milk in the case of dyak fruit bats)."

I'm so excited to see many of us building these virtual research communities. Anthropologists are drawn to connections and boundary-crossing by nature, and blogs like BANDIT, Context and Variation, Neuroanthropology, and now Mammals Suck...Milk! are wonderful vehicles for that interdisciplinary endeavor.

Monday, September 12, 2011

DANTA Winter Field Course

Kim Dingess, Director of DANTA, the Association for Conservation of the Tropics, announces the Winter 2011-2012 field courses. Much of DANTA's advertising is word of mouth so please circulate this announcement:

Danta: Association for Conservation of the Tropics is pleased to announce its winter 2011-2012 field course in tropical biology. Our courses are intended for undergraduates or early graduate level students who have a keen interest in tropical biology and conservation, but have little or no experience of working in a tropical environment. Participants may enroll on either a credit or non-credit basis.

Courses will be held in Costa Rica’s spectacular Osa Peninsula. As one of the largest tracts of rain forest north of the Amazon, this area is renowned for high animal and plant diversity. It is one of only a few places in Costa Rica that has jaguar, puma, sea turtles and four species of monkey (mantled howler monkey, black-handed spider monkey, white-faced capuchin and squirrel monkey). It is also home to nearly 4,000 plant species, including trees more than 200 feet tall. All students participating in our programs will have opportunity to be involved in applied conservation (i.e., sea turtle monitoring and reforestation) and community service.

Winter Session 2011-2012

Primate Behavior and Conservation (December 28 – January 15, 2012). Instructors: Kimberly Dingess, Anthropology, Indiana University, Bloomington; Marni LaFleur, Department of Anthropology, University of Colorado, Boulder and Dr. Klaus Zuberb├╝hler, Department of Psychology, University of St. Andrews, Scotland.

For more information, please visit our website at or email

Hope to see you in Costa Rica!

Primatology meeting in Peru

Dr. Francine Dolins announces an important primatology conference to be held in Peru, October 17-22, 2011.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Tenure Track position in Evol/Ecol Genomics at The Ohio State University

Assistant Professor of Evolutionary or Ecological Genomics
The Ohio State University

The Department of Evolution, Ecology, and Organismal Biology (EEOB) invites applications for a TENURE-TRACK POSITION at the Assistant Professor Rank in Evolutionary or Ecological Genomics. We seek outstanding individuals who address fundamental questions in evolution and/or ecology either through the generation of large-scale sequence or gene expression data or by using either computational/statistical approaches for the analysis of genomic data. Researchers studying non-model systems are strongly encouraged to apply. This position builds on our established strengths in population genetics, systematics, and model-based studies of evolution, and will expand the scale and scope of research on evolutionary processes in EEOB. The successful applicant will have a Ph.D., preferably with postdoctoral experience, and will be expected to develop a strong, externally funded research program, train graduate students, and contribute to undergraduate and graduate teaching. Find additional information about OSU at or about EEOB at For questions about the position, contact Dr. Lisle Gibbs (, (614) 688-3861), Chair of the search committee. The position will begin 1 October 2012.

Applicants should submit a cover letter, current CV, and statements of research and teaching interests, preferably as a single pdf file, and have three letters of reference sent to Ms. Corey Ross at Review of applications will begin on 12 October 2011 and continue until a suitable candidate is identified. Women, minorities, veterans, and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply. EEO/AA employer.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Make your MPIG travel plans!

The 8th annual Midwest Primate Interest Group meeting is around the corner and it's time to make your travel arrangements. Here's a message from MPIG president Dr. Katie MacKinnon:

We have received an impressive group of abstracts for this year's MPIG meeting! The finalized schedule will be up soon--stay tuned.

In the meantime, this is just a gentle reminder to make your hotel reservations and book your flights if you haven't yet done so. We encourage those of you traveling from the same university/geographical areas to coordinate on flights and carpools if possible. While we are finalizing the scientific schedule for poster and papers, I refer you to this general timeline when making your travel arrangements.

Marilyn Norconk has posted a very helpful list of information on the MPIG website, so I direct you there again for hotel/travel info (note airport suggestions and driving directions, etc.). Please note that the hotel reservation deadlines for the special group rates are fast approaching!

Also: if you wish to be picked up at the airport, please email her at will arrange for meeting volunteers to help pick up groups of people at certain times, based on arrivals.

Many thanks again for your interest and participation -- we are looking forward to another great MPIG meeting!


Friday, September 2, 2011

Hey, jobs!

The 2011-2012 Bioanthropology job market is shaping up to be pretty decent. There are many places to look for jobs and you *should* look in multiple places because not all jobs are cross-listed. Here are my recommendations:

The Anthropology job wiki. A perennial favorite of the BANDIT blog, not only does the wiki provide a handy digest of the current market, but you can find out from other users about information requests, interview invitations, job offers and rejections. It can be a little painful to follow the wiki because of that, but considering the frustrating silence so common to so many search committees, it can be a relief.

The job postings page on the AAPA website. This is pretty good and often includes postdoc opportunities.

For the biological anthropologist with training and teaching experience in anatomy, the classifiedsat the American Association of Anatomists might point you to an interesting opportunity.

The career center on the American Anthropological Association website lists several bioanthropology jobs.

Through the University of Wisconsin, you can access Primate Jobs to look for, you know, primate jobs.

If you're willing to do a little more digging (tip: if you want a job you should be willing to do a little more digging!) search anthropology, biology, and psychology postings at the Chronicle of Higher Education.

I'll also continue to post individual job listings that BANDIT readers forward to me. Good luck to all searchers!

On the joys of primate fieldwork, or "There's flies in my eyes": Marni LaFleur

In the next installment of Dispatches from the Field, graduate student Marni LaFleur humorously recounts a series of misadventures during her dissertation fieldwork in Madagascar:

I am a 33 year old graduate student in anthropology at the University of Colorado Boulder and last year, I lived in Madagascar in order to study ring-tailed lemurs (Lemur catta) for my dissertation. I worked in a very remote area and spent nearly 10 months living in a tent. During this time, and like many who do field work, I went without luxuries such as running water, a bathroom, electricity (other than a small generator), the internet, or medical care, not to mention my husband or the people I love at home. It can be tough, but that is life in the field.

Now, I've worked in Madagascar before and have experience in all sorts of forest types and other countries. So, I figured I knew what I was in for. WRONG. None of my experiences or elaborate plans prepared me for the challenges that ensued. Some were to be expected (heat, bugs, etc.), albeit terribly difficult to tolerate. While other challenges were more of a surprise (illnesses, cyclones, using cold French fries to pay off drunken AK-47 yielding crooked cops, etc.), that you just have to chalk up as part of the joys of doing field work in an un-developed nation. The following are some of highlights of my field work highlights:

The heat. Day time high of 55°C and an overnight low of 32°C is miserable. Especially for months on end. There is no way to acclimate. It is horrible.

The tormenting flies. They simply torment you. Endlessly. And they are everywhere and so gross. For goodness sake, they literally barf on you and then lick up their own barf. On you, and on your food, and dishes, and eyeballs, and all forms of feces. And they have the audacity to continually land on the same spot, like the tip of your freaking nose, and will happily fly up your nose and down your throat. For months. Sick.

The incessant mosquitoes. I don't think I can even accurately describe the mosquito horrors. Let me just say that in addition to 3 layers of head to toe clothing (including two pairs of socks on my hands), I tried to set up a mosquito net in the forest, and it didn't help. Better yet, picture what SWARMS of mosquitoes do when you drop your drawers. Countless swollen burning potentially Elephantitis infected mosquito bites on your private parts, repeatedly, is about as bad as it gets. Trust me.

Everything I own falling apart. In August I left my husband behind and my heart crumbled. In September my hiking boots died (which is a big freaking deal). In October my radio receiver for tracking animals died. In November my tent and water filter died. In December my body kicked the proverbial bucket, as did my duct tape. Seriously. I didn't know duct tape could die. In January my second radio receiver arrived, and promptly died. In February my generator died. In March, I was given a human raised pet lemur, who escaped from my tent and I am sure died (this is a long sad story from which I am still heartbroken). In April, I dropped my Ipod in a bucket of dirty laundry water and it died, which is admittedly less traumatic, but nearly unbearable by this point.

Illness and mystery parasites. In December I had Dengue fever, which in hindsight, nearly killed me. After that, I had one malady after another. A calcium deficiency serious enough to threaten heart and other muscle functions, followed by a magnesium deficiency, followed by Mononucleosis, followed by an immune reaction which was at least consistent with malaria. Not cool, my friends, not cool.

The car ride from hell. After the calcium, but before the magnesium deficiency, a routine by-monthly food supply trip that normally took 10 hours, turned into a 5 day epic journey. Probably the one and only time I will sleep inside a car (with 4 others) which is A) short a functional transmission, B) cozily parked in the middle of a lake, and C) surrounded by the deafening calls of wildly mating frogs. I did more than my share of wading in stagnant wriggly tadpole water over that 5-day period and yes, I had open wounds on my feet. As one does.

Cyclone Bingzia. The 2011 "cyclone season" opened with Cyclone Bingzia and was responsible for the car ride from hell. It was much more destructive on the eastern coast of Madagascar (I was on the west) but did manage to make rivers out of "roads" and bring a 2ft deep flash flood through camp, which of course included my tent home.

Attempted assassination on the president and a sequential 4 day internet black out. To be honest, this happened when I was out in the forest, and I actually had no idea, but it sounds pretty dramatic. The government has been unstable and under dictator rule since 2009 when a popular 30 year-old former DJ decided to stage a coup and then ousted the actual elected president. The former DJ has been in power ever since, and remains so, without end in sight.

That, I believe, nicely sums the unpleasantries of my dissertation field work. I must, however, admit to already planning my imminent return to Madagascar. Why? I love the animals. And I'm banking that an equally horrible field experience would never happen to the same person twice. Right?

Tenure-track Psychology Position at University of Delaware

The UNIVERSITY OF DELAWARE DEPARTMENT OF PSYCHOLOGY invites applications for tenure-track Assistant Professor positions to begin September 1, 2012. Under some circumstances, candidates at the Associate Professor level might be considered. We are particularly interested in candidates who can bridge departmental areas and extend existing research strengths within the department. One priority area is Cognitive Neuroscience, broadly defined. We welcome applicants working in any area of cognition.

A second targeted area is Neuroendocrinology / Psychoneuroimmunology. We prefer a colleague studying endocrine or immune physiology in relation to animal models of stress, sex differences, psychopathology, developmental disorders, psychosomatic disease, neurogenetics, social processes and health, or aging; applicants using other approaches to study these issues may also be considered. These positions, which could be based in any of the department's areas (Behavioral Neuroscience, Clinical, Cognitive, Social), are part of a new departmental hiring initiative that reflects the arrival of a new department chair, an emphasis on a neuroscience perspective, and cross-disciplinary interaction. The initiative will bring additional faculty to our department, located in the Philadelphia metropolitan area.

For more information about the department, see Applicants should go to to submit a cover letter stating research and teaching interests, along with a current vita. In addition, 3-5 reprints (all in pdf format) and three letters of reference should be sent to

Applicants for these positions should have a Ph.D. or expect to complete their degree requirements prior to appointment. Inquiries should be addressed to the search committee chairs, Dr. James E. Hoffman (; 302-831-2453) for Cognitive Neuroscience, or Dr. Anna Klintsova (; 302-831-0452) for Neuroendocrinology/Psychoneuroimmunology. Review of applications will begin on October 1, 2011, although applications received after that date may be considered.

James E. Hoffman
Department of Psychology
University of Delaware
Newark, DE 19716
Fax: 302-831-3645