Trachtenberg Teaching Award Distinguished Lecture

"Teaching in the desert: Insights on international training experiences from the Koobi Fora Research and Training Program."

David R. Braun
Anthropology Department
The George Washington University
Koobi Fora Research and Training Program

Lecture: 4:00-5:00pm; Reception: 5:00-6:00pm


For the last 15 years, David Braun has been training a diverse community of students in the Turkana Basin in northern Kenya. This arid country, scorched and roasting under the equatorial sun, is the anchor for Dr. Braun’s main pedagogical focus:  The Koobi Fora Research and Training Program. His research focuses on the origins of tool use in our early ancestors; his research in this region has allowed him to investigate some of the earliest instances of tool use in our lineage. In collaboration with colleagues from Kenya, England, South Africa and Germany, he has been able to develop a truly unique learning environment. Here he will discuss lessons learned from trying to integrate high impact research with student focused training in a setting where electricity is a luxury. This work has been published in high profile journals like Science and the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.