Larissa Swedell
Ph.D. Columbia University 2000

Professor, Department of Anthropology, Queens College-CUNY
Professor, CUNY AnthropologyBiology, and Psychology PhD Programs
Core Faculty, New York Consortium in Evolutionary Primatology (
Honorary Research Associate, Archaeology, University of Cape Town

Office: Powdermaker Hall 315-E
Phone: 718-997-2897
Fax: 718-997-2885




As a biological anthropologist, my interest in nonhuman primates derives in part from what their behavior, ecology, and evolution can tell us about the evolutionary history of humans and the biological underpinnings of modern human behavior.  As a behavioral ecologist, I am most interested in the interacting reproductive strategies of males and females and the evolutionary advantages of sociality and social bonds.  Taxonomically, my research has focused on papionin monkeys, especially baboons.  To date, most of my research has involved hamadryas baboons in Ethiopia via the Filoha Hamadryas Project, and for the past several years I've been running a second research program focusing on chacma baboons of the Western Cape Peninsula of South Africa.  As a complement to my research, I'm involved in conservation strategies to promote the value of baboons, which are regarded as pests all over Africa and are emblematic of human-wildlife conflict globally.  Most of these efforts have taken place as part of the Imfene public outreach program based in South Africa, co-founded with Julian Saunders.

Teaching & Research Focus:

  • Primate Diversity
  • Primate Social Behavior
  • Sexual Selection
  • Baboons
  • Biological Anthropology
  • Human Social Evolution
  • Human-Wildlife Conflict Mitigation


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Mailing Address: Department of Anthropology, Queens College, Flushing NY 11367-1597 USA