Elwyn L. Simons

Director, Division of Fossil Primates
Senior Primate Biologist, Duke Primate Center
James B. Duke Professor (emeritus), Department of Biological Anthropology and Anatomy

B.S., Rice University, 1953
M.A., Princeton University, 1955
Ph.D., Princeton University, 1956
D.Phil., University College, Oxford, 1959
D.Sc., University College, Oxford, 1995

Dr. Elwyn L. Simons is primarily interested in the history, general biology, and behavior of living and extinct primates. His primary research concerns focus on the early evolution of anthropoids in the late Eocene and early Oligocene of the Fayum Depression, Egypt; the paleoecology, dating, taphonomy, anatomy, and relationships of extinct placentals from these sites; dating, extinctions, anatomy, and relationships of giant subfossil lemurs of Madagascar; behavioral and conservation studies of extant Malagasy lemurs; the evolutionary history and relationships of middle and late Tertiary apes, as well as Plio-Pleistocene hominids. Dr. Simons has led over 70 field expeditions to Egypt, Madagascar, India, Iran, Nepal, and Wyoming.

He has held professional appointments at Yale University (1960-1977), Duke University (1977-present), and was the Director of the Duke Primate Center (1977-1991) and Scientific Director (1991-2001). He has authored nearly 300 scientific publications and is the holder of many high honors. He is a member of the United States National Academy of Sciences, the American Philosophical Society, as well as many other professional associations. He was elected a “Knight of the National Order” by the government of Madagascar and has been the recipient of many awards including the prestigious Charles R. Darwin Award for Lifetime Achievement from the American Association of Physical Anthropologists.
Elwyn L. Simons' publication list
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© Timothy M. Ryan/Division of Fossil Primates