Charles Stanish

University of South Florida

Primary Section: 51, Anthropology
Membership Type: Member (elected 2010)


Charles Stanish is Executive Director of the Institute for the Advanced Study of Culture and the Environment at the University of South Florida.  He was director of the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology at UCLA for 20 years prior to moving to Tampa. He has worked extensively in Peru, Bolivia, and Chile, conducting archaeological research on the prehistoric societies of the region. He earned his BA from Pennsylvania State and his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago.  His theoretical work focuses on the roles that trade, war, ritual, and labor organization play in the evolution of human cooperation and complex societies.  His principal books include The Evolution of Human Co-operation (2017-Cambridge), Ancient Titicaca: The Evolution of Complex Society in Southern Peru and Northern Bolivia (2003-Berkeley), Ritual and Pilgrimage in the Ancient Andes (with B. Bauer, 2001-Texas) and Ancient Andean Political Economy (1992-Texas).  He was a Senior Fellow at Dumbarton Oaks Research Library, is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and is a member of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States.

Research Interests

Stanish studies the evolution of human cooperation, the evolution of complex society, and long term human-induced landscape changes in the Holocene. He conducts fieldwork principally in Andean South America. 

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