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Contact Details

+64 21 279 5265
Department of Anatomy
BA(Hons) PhD(Otago)
Research summary
Bioarchaeology, ethics, and forensic anthropology
  • BIOA 101 Introduction to Biological Anthropology
  • BIOA 201 Biocultural Human Skeletal Biology
  • BIOA 301 Biological Anthropology of the Human Skeleton
  • BIOA 401 Advanced Biological Anthropology
  • ANAT 458 Current Topics in Anatomical Science

Professional affiliations (appointed through invitation and/or vote):

  • Committee of the Society of the Study of Childhood in the Past (2016–)
  • University of Otago O-zone Research Group member (since 2009) and Co-Convenor (2014–2015)
  • Royal Society of New Zealand Early Career Researcher's Working Group and Interim Committee (2015)
  • Royal Society of New Zealand Early Career Researcher Committee (2015–), Vice Chair (Social Science)
  • Fulbright NZ Alumni Association (2009–)
  • ASIA:NZ Foundation Young Leaders Network (Dunedin Cluster Member) (2005–)
  • New Zealand Federation of Graduate Women committee member (2007–2014) (National Executive and Otago Branch President) (2009–2014)


Siân’s research interests lie in understanding major human transitions in the past through the experiences of the most vulnerable people in the population: infants and children. Her work interrogates central archaeological questions of the intensification of agriculture and human responses to this seminal time in prehistoric Southeast Asia, East Asia and South America. She also contributes to topical issues in her discipline through her work on the ethics of the study of human remains.

Since 2007, Siân has had more than 100 peer-reviewed publications, and has gained grants from the Marsden Fund, Australian Research Council, FONDOCYT, Fullbright NZ, Wenner-Gren Foundation, and National Geographic. She is the Co-Editor-In Chief for Bioarchaeology International, and her co-edited book, The Mother-Infant Nexus in the Past: Small Beginnings, Significant Outcomes (Springer) has been used for the Research Excellence Framework (UK). Siân was the recipient of the Rowheath Trust Award and Carl Smith Research Medal, and the NZ Association of Scientists Hill Tinsley Medal.

Additional details

Editorial roles

  • Co-Editor in Chief for Bioarchaeology International (2020-)
  • Co-editor of special issue: Pandemics in the Past for Bioarchaeology International (2020-2021)
  • Managing Board of Peer Community Reviews (2020-)
  • Editorial Board of the Springer series entitled Bioarchaeology and Social Theory (2020-)
  • Book Review Editor for Childhood in the Past: an International Journal (2020-)
  • Editor for PLOS ONE (2014-)
  • Editorial Board for the SPAFA Journal (2018-)

Departmental service

  • Biological Anthropology Research Group Leader (2020-)
  • Department of Anatomy Executive (2019-)
  • Department of Anatomy Research Committee (2012-2014, 2017-2019)
  • Department of Anatomy Seminar Committee (2011-)
  • Department of Anatomy Teaching Management Committee (2013-2016)
  • Department of Anatomy Postgraduate Student Committee (2012-2013)

University service

  • Summer School and Continuing Education Board (2019-2021) Health Science representative
  • Summer School and Continuing Education Board (2018-2019) Health Science representative substitute
  • Staff Women’s Caucus (2018-)
  • University of Otago Performance Based Research Funding Steering Committee (2015-2018)
  • OSMS Māori Strategic Framework Group (2015-2019)
  • I have started working with Dr Jonathan Broadbent (Dentistry) to appropriately curate the Faculty’s Museum collection (2015-)
  • University of Otago kōiwi tangata policy working group (2015-2019)
  • University of Otago Research Committee (2015-2016)
  • Division of Health Sciences Research Committee (2015-2016)
  • Voted position as co-convener of the O-zone Research Group (2014-2016)
  • Division of Health Sciences Research Forum Organising Committee (2012)


Southorn, M., Halcrow, S., & Cameron, C. (2024). Maternal marginalization and infant mortality in Dunedin, New Zealand, 1850-1940. Proceedings of the Society for American Archaeology (SAA) 89th Annual Meeting. (pp. 943). Retrieved from Conference Contribution - Published proceedings: Abstract

Halcrow, S., Southorn, M., Loncar, S., Sudron, E., & Smith, C. (2024). Forgotten children: Infant skeletal legacy collections of the W. D. Trotter Anatomy Museum, New Zealand. Proceedings of the Society for American Archaeology (SAA) 89th Annual Meeting. (pp. 398). Retrieved from Conference Contribution - Published proceedings: Abstract

Zhang, Q., Liu, Y., Xiao, Y., Hao, D., Wang, L., Halcrow, S. E., … Dong, Y. (2024). The intersection of diet, class, and sex during the Eastern Zhou (770-221 BCE): Bioarchaeological evidence from the Dahan cemetery, China. Archaeological & Anthropological Sciences, 16, 78. doi: 10.1007/s12520-024-01970-1 Journal - Research Article

Halcrow, S., Robbins Schug, G., Agarwal, S., & Baker, B. (2024). Ethical guidelines and policies of Bioarchaeology International. Bioarchaeology International. Advance online publication. doi: 10.5744/bi.2023.7101 Journal - Research Other

Rogers, L. M., Halcrow, S. E., Kleffmann, T., & King, C. L. (2024). Comparing Walker's (2008) skull trait sex estimation standard to proteomic sex estimation for a group of South Asian individuals. Forensic Science International: Synergy, 8, 100450. doi: 10.1016/j.fsisyn.2023.100450 Journal - Research Article

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