The Smithsonian’s Human Origins Project conducts field and lab research on the evolution of early human adaptations. Our key research partners are in East Africa and East Asia – especially in Kenya, China, and Indonesia. Our digs and studies in these regions, along with investigations by associates working in Ethiopia, Tanzania, India, Mozambique, among other countries, help generate scientific data on the long-term interaction of human ancestors with their surroundings.

The latest fieldwork at Olorgesailie is a collaborative effort of the Smithsonian’s Human Origins Program and the Department of Earth Sciences of the National Museums of Kenya. Led by Dr. Rick Potts, the excavations offer a look at how early hominins used the landscape and how they responded to environmental changes.