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Erick Robinson

Portrait of Erick Robinson

Assistant Professor
Director, Center for Applied Archaeological Science
Phone: (208) 426-3444
Office: Hemingway Building, Room 114

Erick Robinson’s Curriculum Vita
Erick Robinson’s Publications


Ph.D., Archaeology, University of Sheffield
B.A., Anthropology, B.A. History, University of Kansas



Erick Robinson is an archaeologist, human ecologist, and Quaternary scientist. His teaching and research focuses on evolutionary ecology and Indigenous history in the Intermountain West and northern Europe. He specializes in the integration of archaeological, climate, and environmental records to understand how humans adapted to population growth and environmental changes over the past 12,000 years. His work also focuses on the evolution of technology, from stone tools to irrigation systems.

Professional Interests

  • Archaeological Science
  • Paleoclimate and paleoenvironment
  • Evolutionary ecology
  • Paleodemography
  • Evolution of Technology
  • Intermountain West
  • Northern Europe

Current Research

  • Hydroclimatic Variability and the Evolution of Socioecological Complexity in Dryland Farming Communities. Funded by the National Science Foundation Archaeology Program (#2115151). Co-PI with Judson B. Finley (Anthropology, Utah State University) and R. Justin DeRose (Wildland Resources, Utah State University). Integration of high precision radiocarbon dating, dendrochronology, and geoarchaeology to investigate the brief florescence of Fremont horticultural villages across the northern Colorado Plateau and eastern Great Basin, AD 200-1400. This project seeks to explain the hydroclimatic constraints on the evolution and resilience of farming communities in dryland ecosystems.
  •   Paleoclimate and the Peopling of the Earth (People 3000) International Working Group. Funded by PAGES (Past Global Changes). Integrating archaeological data, paleoecological data, and dynamic modeling to explain long-term patterns of growth in the consumption of energy in social-ecological systems and the tipping points of these systems within the contexts of changing climates and environments over the last 3000 years.

Prospective Students

Robinson is currently accepting students interested in archaeological science, Bayesian chronological modeling, big data, cultural resource management, environmental archaeology, evolutionary ecology, foraging-farming transitions, geoarchaeology, lithic technology, material culture studies, museum studies, paleoecology, quantitative methods, social-ecological systems, or spatial-temporal modeling.

Courses Taught

  • Prehistory of North America
  • World Archaeology
  • Evolution of Human Technology
  • Geoarchaeology
  • Archaeological Science
  • History and Theory in Anthropology
  • Research Design
  • Archaeological Field School