Notable People

Christophe Boesch – Primatologist studying chimpanzees, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology.

Dorothy Cheney – Professor of Biology, University of Pennsylvania, known for her studies of vervet monkeys in Kenya (Amboseli) and baboons in Botswana (Okavango Delta).

Agustin Fuentes – Professor of Anthropology, University of Notre Dame, an ethnoprimatologist who has studied macaques extensively.

Birute Galdikas – Anthropologist/primatologist studying orangutans for almost forty years, set up Orangutan Foundation International with colleagues.

Jane Goodall – Primatologist/anthropologist/ethologist who is considered the expert on chimpanzees, after 45 years of study in the Gombe Stream National Park in Tanzania, founded the Jane Goodall Institute.

Donna Haraway – Professor, History of Consciousness Department at University of California Santa Cruz , she has written Primate Visions:  Gender, Race and Nature in the World of Modern Science (1989) and more recently When Species Meet (2008).

Sarah Hrdy – Anthropologist/primatologist studying langurs, professor at University of California- Davis, and has written notable books such as The Woman that Never Evolved (1981) and Mother Nature:  a history of mothers, infants and natural selection (1999).

Alison Jolly – Primatologist, specialising in ring-tailed lemurs, currently a visiting senior research fellow at University of Sussex.

Russell Mittermeier – Primatologist and biological anthropologist, has studied lemurs in Madagascar, is Chairman of the IUCN World Conservation Union Species Survival Commission’s Primate Specialist Group and is president of Conservation International,

Toshisada Nishida – Primatologist (died 2011), first to discover that chimpanzees live communal lives after studies of wild chimps in Tanzania,  former president of the Primate Society Japan, International Primatological Society, Head of Laboratory of Human Evolution Studies, Kyoto University.

Eloy Rodriguez  – Professor of Environmental Studies, Cornell University, known for his research with Wrangham on use of plants by chimps (and other animals) to self-medicate, coined the term zoopharmacognosy.

Thelma E. Rowell – Studied baboons in Uganda in the 1960s and came to conclusions that contradicted the traditional view of baboon societies, as dominated by competitive males.

Robert Seyfarth – Professor of Psychology at University of Pennsylvania, has studied vervet monkeys and baboons with his wife, Dorothy Cheney, focusing on social behaviour, vocalisations and cognition.

Barbara Smuts – Anthropologist and psychologist, Professor at University of Michigan who has studied baboons, as well as chimpanzees and dolphins,

Shirley Strum – Biological anthropologist specialising in primate behaviour at University of California, San Diego, has studied olive baboons in Kenya for almost forty years,

Frans de Waal – Primatologist, CH Chandler Professor of Primate Behavior at Emory University, and Director of the Living Links Center, Yerkes National Primate Research Center, known for his studies of bonobos and chimpanzees and into primates and empathy as presented in the book, The Age of Empathy (2009).

Sherwood Washburn – Anthropologist and primatologist, studied baboons in Kenya and developed theories about human evolution based on his observations, and these theories influenced the field of primatology and evolutionary theory for decades.

Richard Wrangham -British primatologist, Harvard professor and co-director of the Kibale Chimpanzee Project, Uganda and at the forefront of study into chimp self-medication (zoopharmacognosy).

Robert Yerkes  – Psychologist and primatologist who studied chimpanzees in captivity (in his own home), after buying two from a zoo ((see his book, Almost Human, 1924), founded the Yale University Laboratories of Primate Biology, later moved and renamed Yerkes National Primate Research Center.

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