The human environmental dynamics lab in the department of anthropology at Penn State studies the interactive and changing relationships among people and their social and ecological environments.

Rebecca Bliege Bird and Douglas Bird, PrinciPal Investigators


What We Do:

  • Sustainability and indigenous livelihoods

  • ecosystem function

  • behavioral ecology

  • human dimensions of natural resources

  • Ethnoarchaeology

  • Cooperation and social capital

  • signaling theory


Post-doctoral, PhD, and undergraduate students in our lab are involved in designing studies related to our current projects and developing new programs of research to address questions about the social and ecological context that shape and are shaped by human use of natural resources. Prospective graduate students may apply through the Anthropology or Ecology programs, depending on their background and interests. A flyer highlighting the Anthropology graduate program can be downloaded by clicking here.

Currently we have opportunities in our lab for graduate students that are especially interested in anthropogenic landscape ecology and commensal relationships between people and other animals.