QARGMcMicken College of Arts & SciencesQuarternary and Anthropocene Research GroupUniversity of Cincinnati

QARG Members

Kenneth Tankersley

Kenneth Tankersley
Tankersley's Research
Departments of Anthropology and Geology
Associate Professor
Quaternary Environments
Quaternary Geochronology

Professor Tankersley’s research focuses on Quaternary environmental and climatic changes associated with significant periods of culture change, from Pleistocene hunter–gatherers to late Holocene complex societies. He is particularly concerned with determining the timing of rapid, profound, and catastrophic environmental, climatic, and cultural changes in order to understand the dynamics and interactions between people and the distribution and use of natural resources, plants and animals, adaptation and extinction, sustainability and abandonment. This research involves cave exploration, surface survey, excavation, drill–core sampling, remote sensing, sedimentological analyses, petrography, and geochemistry. He has concentrated his efforts in two major geographic regions: North America and Eastern Siberia. Both of these regions have extensive, well preserved, and datable Quaternary deposits with rich paleoenvironmental records. He has recently undertaken research on the depositional history, paleoenvironmental record, and volcanic events associated with the ancient reservoirs of the Maya city of Tikal, Guatemala. This recent study provides exiting new insights to human land use sustainability and soil formation processes in the lowland Maya area. Professor Tankersley directs two laboratories, one in the Department of Anthropology for sediment analyses, the preparation of stable and radiogenic isotope samples, and petrography, and the other (currently under construction) at the UC Center for Field Studies for field records and curation.

QARG Publications
Tankersley, K.B., Scarborough, V.L., Dunning, N., Huff, W., Maynard, B., Gerke, T.L., 2011 Evidence for Volcanic Ash Fall in the Maya Lowlands from a Reservoir at Tikal, Guatemala. Journal of Archaeological Science 38, 2925-2938.

Tankersley, K.B., and Balantyne, M., 2010 X–ray Power Diffraction Analysis of Late Holocene Reservoir Sediments. Journal of Archaeological Science 37, 133-138.

Tankersley, K.B., Waters, M.R. and Stafford, Jr. T.W., 2009 Clovis and the American Mastodon at Big Bone Lick, Kentucky. American Antiquity (74) 3, 558-567.