Ben Fitzhugh
(Ph.D. University of Michigan 1996)
Professor, Department of Anthropology

Director (2014-2021), Quaternary Research Center
University of Washington
Seattle, WA. 98195-3100

My research focuses on human-environmental dynamics and archaeological histories of maritime/coastal hunter-gatherers especially in the North Pacific. This research addresses questions of human vulnerability and resilience in remote subarctic environments. I collaborate widely with scholars across a range of disciplines in atmospheric, earth and biological sciences and take an historical ecological perspective on human adjustments to (and of) environments in which they live. Recent efforts include the development of international collaborations to explore the ecological and archaeological histories of the North Pacific Rim. I am coordinating a comparative marine ecological working group called Paleoecology of Subarctic Seas (PESAS), which brings together paleoclimate, paleoecology, archaeology and history to investigate similarities and differences in the human-environmental co-evolution the subarctic North Pacific and North Atlantic since the Last Glacial Maximum. I am currently Director of the Quaternary Research Center at the University of Washington, and in this role, seek to promote interdisciplinary scholarship into the evolution of the earth surface (and the role of humans in it) over the past two and a half million years. I am also a founding member of the UW Future of Ice Initiative. I am presently a Professor of Anthropology at the University of Washington in Seattle, WA, where I also serve as Adjunct Curator at the Burke Museum of Natural History and Affiliate Faculty in the Center for the Study of Demography and Ecology, the Ellison Center for Russian East European and Central Asian Studies, and the Canadian Studies Center.

For recent publications, courses taught and news items, please link to my UW Anthropology Faculty page.

Other links of possible interest



Note: The Archaeological Gulf of Alaska Radiocarbon Database has been removed from this website as woefully out of date.  Individuals interested in an up-to-date compilation are referred to William Brown ( who has a much more current data set.

Return to the Anthropology Home Page