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PHENOTYPIC ADAPTABILITY & SKELETAL EVOLUTION

Welcome to the Phenotypic Adaptability and Skeletal Evolution research group. We are a collaborative network of researchers and students interested in human morphological variation, how and why it develops over the lifespan, and its origins and evolution.

 
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Ankle and Ligaments

SKELETAL BIOLOGY

We use an integrative and comparative framework to study biological plasticity and adaptation in the human skeleton and across the lifespan. Our research questions center around growth and development, and the rate of aging to understand human skeletal biology in both archaeological and modern (living) human populations using 3D imaging and traditional osteological techniques.

HUMAN PHENOTYPIC VARIATION

We investigate mechanisms through which human phenotypic variation (skeletal structure, body size/proportions, body composition) is shaped by plastic adaptive responses, and the functional and energetic implications of that variation. We are interested in how and why skeletal morphologies emerge and use 3D geometric morphometric approaches in pursuit of these questions.

EVOLUTIONARY BIOMECHANICS

Through the combination of biology and engineering, we study the evolution of human locomotion and the locomotor system. We are investigating broad questions related to functional morphology and skeletal biomechanics through the application of musculoskeletal computer modeling to archaeological skeletal remains, and in collaboration with the Department of Mechanical Engineering.

 

ALISON MURRAY (MACINTOSH)

Biological/Evolutionary Anthropologist

HELEN KURKI

Biological Anthropologist

STEPHANIE CALCE

Biological/Forensic Anthropologist

SARAH-LOUISE DECRAUSAZ

Biological Anthropologist

 
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MISSION STATEMENT

The PhASE research group at the University of Victoria is an interdisciplinary group of scholars using cutting edge research and collaborative exploration to better understand human variation and the complex and intersecting cultural and biological mechanisms that shape it. A diversity of human perspectives and experiences is central to our success, and we aim to draw and support colleagues and students who reflect this diversity. PhASE strives to be a safe and supportive community that celebrates the importance and scholarship of all members, regardless of culture, nationality, sexuality, gender, age or disability, promotes respect and appreciation for difference, and challenges the status quo.

To do so, we are committed to:

  • prioritizing training sessions for members in implicit bias, EDI, and sex- and gender-based considerations in research

  • ensuring journal club reflects a balanced and diverse array of scholars, promoting the perspectives and scholarship of historically excluded groups in biological anthropology

  • maintaining zero tolerance for discrimination

 

CONNECT WITH US

Department of Anthropology

University of Victoria

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Image by Glenn Carstens-Peters
 
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