Brian G. Richmond
Associate Professor of Anthropology
Bldg. BB (2114 G St.) 208
Areas of Expertise
Human and ape evolution, origin and evolution of human bipedalism; functional anatomy; trabecular bone structure; craniofacial biomechanics; finite element analysis.
Dr. Richmond is a biological anthropologist whose research involves human paleontology and functional anatomy aimed at understanding the origin and evolution of human gait, feeding biomechanics, and manual dexterity. He is also Associate Editor of the American Journal of Physical Anthropology.
Dr. Richmond has conducted paleontological fieldwork in Kenya, Ethiopia, and Turkey in sediments spanning the Oligocene to the Pleistocene, with an emphasis on great ape and human fossils. He has also done experimental laboratory studies on the locomotion of chimpanzees, gibbons, and several Old World monkey species, and finite element analysis work on skeletal architecture.
Paleontological fieldwork in the early Pleistocene at Ileret, Kenya. New fossil discoveries form one of the foundations of human evolutionary research, and provide the raw data of the hominin fossil record and its environmental and behavioral context.
- Trabecular bone functional morphology. Trabecular bone structure (the spongy bone matrix within joints) tracks habitual joint function, and therefore holds promise for resolving long-standing debates over the nature of locomotion in early hominins, including Australopithecus africanus, A. afarensis, and early Homo.
- Finite element analysis of primate craniofacial biomechanics. As part of an NSF HOMINID-funded collaborative research project, we use finite element analysis in conjunction with experimental data to test hypotheses about how the face and skull are strained during biting and chewing, how craniofacial shape influences feeding biomechanics, and ultimately the biomechanical significance of hominin skull morphology.
Ph.D. 1998, SUNY at Stony Brook
M.A. 1995, SUNY at Stony Brook
B.A. 1990, Rice University
Selected Articles and Book Chapters
2012 Richmond, B.G., and W.L. Jungers. "Hominin proximal femur morphology from the Tugen Hills to Flores." in S.C. Reynolds and A. Gallagher, eds., African Genesis: Perspectives on Hominin Revolution, p. 248-267. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
2011 Williams, E.M., A.D. Gordon, and B.G. Richmond. "Achieving efficiency and accuracy during Oldowan stone tool production," American Journal of Physical Anthropology Supplement 52: 312.
2010 Braun, D.R., J. Harris, N. Levin, J. McCoy, A. Herries, M. Bamford, L. Bishop, B. Richmond, and M. Kibunjia. "Early hominin diet included diverse terrestrial and aquatic animals 1.95 Ma in East Turkana, Kenya," Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA 107(24): 10771-10772.
2009 Bennett, M.R., J. Harris, B. Richmond, D. Braun, E. Mbua, P. Ikura, D. Olago, M. Kibunjia, C. Omuombo, A. Behrensmeyer, D. Huddart, and S. Gonzalez. "Early hominin foot morphology based on 1.5-million-year-old footprints from Ileret, Kenya," Science 323(5918): 1197-1201.
2008 Richmond, B.G., and W.L. Jungers. "Orrorin tugenensis Femoral morphology and the evolution of hominin bipedalism," Science 319: 1662-1665.
2007 Richmond, B.G. "Biomechanics of phalangeal curvature," Journal of Human Evolution 53: 678-690.
2007 Green, D., A. Gordon, and B.G. Richmond. "Limb-size proportions in Australopithecus afarensis and Australopithecus africanus," Journal of Human Evolution 52: 187-200.
2005 Richmond, B.G., B.W. Wright, I. Grosse, P.C. Dechow, C. Ross, M. Spencer, and D. Strait. "Finite element analysis in functional morphology," Anatomical Record 238A: 259-274.
2001 Richmond, B.G., D.R. Begun, and D.S. Strait. "The origin of human bipedalism: The knuckle-walking hypothesis revisited," Yearbook of Physical Anthropology 44: 70-105.
To see syllabi, click on the course title.
Anth 1001 (old 001): Introduction to Biological Anthropology
Anth 1005 (005): Biological Bases of Human Behavior
Anth 3401 (141): Human Functional Anatomy
Anth 3402 (142): Human Evolutionary Anatomy
Anth 3412 (147): Hominin Evolution
Anth 6401 (241): Functional Anatomy
Anth 6413 (244): Analytical Methods in Human Evolutionary Studies
Homp 6201 (201): Hominid Paleobiology
Homp 8302 (302): Public Understanding of Science Internship
Last updated April 21, 2014