News & Community

Newspaper and pen

The Department of Anthropology, including both faculty members and graduate students, are often in the news. They also frequently lend their expertise to various community organizations. This webpage highlights some of these contributions.

All Department Archived News.

May, 2024 - Western researchers receive Governor General’s Innovation Award: Lisa Hodgetts and Edward Eastaugh share knowledge with Indigenous communities searching for unmarked graves

Anthropology researchers Lisa Hodgetts and Ed Eastaugh are being recognized by Governor General Mary Simon for their work with the Canadian Archaeological Association Working Group on Unmarked Graves (CAAWGUG).

The network of 15 scholars from across the country offers training, guidance and support to Indigenous communities conducting searches for missing children. Created in the wake of the devastating announcement of unmarked graves near a former residential school in Kamloops in 2021, CAAWGUG shares anthropological expertise with Indigenous communities in hopes of passing on skills and strategies to aid in those complicated and emotional investigations. Read the article in Western News

October, 2023 - The diverse and dynamic nature of sibling caregiving over time - Webcast with Dr. Pamela Block

This webcast is a powerful conversation between Dr. Pamela Block from Western University and Helen Ries from Siblings Canada. They discuss the preliminary results of their study into sibling relationships and how they change over time, particularly as parents age and are no longer able to care. This study was supported by the Canadian Centre for Caregiving Excellence.

This study is ongoing, if you and your sibling would like to participate in the study please contact us at

August, 2023 - Western students dig up history in the Caribbean

Supervised by Professor Neal Ferris, six undergraduate students and a graduate student were part of the field school, which provided foundational skills in archaeology, such as identification, excavation, and handling artifacts when they’re recovered. The group worked closely with the Nevis Historical and Conservation Society. Read the article in Western News.

August, 2023 - PhD candidate Javier Alvarez Vandeputte named Vanier Scholar 2023-24

Congratulations to Anthropology PhD candidate Javier Alvarez Vandeputte, who has been named one of four Western Vanier Scholars for 2023-24. Javier's research focuses on the linguistic revitalization strategies developed by the Mapuche Indigenous people of south-central Chile. The Vanier Canada Scholarships recognize leadership and scholarly achievement. Read the article in Western News.

July, 2023 - Professor Pamela Block & students take unique research trip to Brazil

Western students Nadine Domingo, Monica Rocha Martinez and professor Pamela Block travelled to Florianopolis, Brazil for a field research trip in May 2023.

The group went to explore disability studies and activism, teaming up with Block’s longtime research associate and friend Marivete Gesser, a psychologist and professor at the Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (UFSC) in Florianopolis. Read the article in Inside Western.

April, 2023 - PhD candidate Tamara Britton a finalist in SSRHC Storytellers Challenge

Anthropology PhD candidate Tamara Britton has been selected as Top 25 finalist in the 2023 SSHRC Storytellers Challenge.

Tamara's research is highlighted in the May 19 issue of Western News. Read the article.

View Tamara’s video submission, ‘People, Primates and Bamboo: Negotiating Balance through the Study of Human-Environmental Relationship in the Pacoche Wildlife Refuge, Ecuador’, here:

March, 2023 - Professor Lindsay Bell - Upcoming Book

In her upcoming book, Under Pressure: Diamond Mining and Everyday Life in Northern Canada, Anthropology Professor Lindsay Bell uses Mackenzie Place Tower as the central focus as she examines the way resource extraction has impacted demographics, economics and culture in Hay River, and the Northwest Territories more broadly. Read the story by Rob Rombouts.

March, 2023 - Roma Roth, BA’90, adapts another series by best-selling author Robyn Carr, this time setting it in Canada

When fellow producers told Roma Roth “romantic dramas never sell,” Roth ignored their advice. She chose to make a break from delivering highly rated thrillers for the tv movie market, and bypass a saturated marketplace of psychological thrillers and murder mysteries. Read the article by Keri Ferguson featured in Western News.

February, 2023 - Dr. Trish Markert joins the Dept. of Anthropology

We are delighted to introduce our newest faculty member! Dr. Trish Markert will be joining the Dept. of Anthropology as an Assistant Professor. Drawing upon historical archaeology and mixed methods such as ethnography, narrative and architectural analysis, oral history, and digital mapping, Dr. Markert studies how migrant communities create a sense of place across generations. Dr. Markert's research is focussed in a recent article by Rob Rombouts. Read the article.

January, 2023 - Mingyuan Zhang - Article in American Anthropologist

PhD Alum Mingyuan Zhang (2018) has a new open-access article, "“Burn to Harvest, Burn to Sabotage: Between Fire and Water on a Sugar Plantation in Madagascar” in American Anthropologist - THE JOURNAL. Read the article.

January, 2023 - Milk consumption increased ancient human body size

A new study led by Professor Jay Stock suggests that milk consumption in some regions between 7,000 and 2,000 years ago led to an increase in human body mass and stature. This ran counter to trends in body size experienced elsewhere in the world. Read the article by Rob Rombouts - Special to Western News.