Department of Anthropology and Archaeology
We are happy to announce that Iulia Badescu (MA Anthropology 2011) has just been appointed as Assistant Professor in the Department of Anthropology at the Université de Montréal, starting in June 2017.
Iulia studies infant care, development and maternal investment in wild primates. Her BSc and MA were completed at the University of Calgary. After participating to the Belize and the Ghana primatology field schools, Iulia worked with Pascale Sicotte for her MA, and investigated factors affecting alloparenting and natal coat development in infant ursine colobus monkeys at Boabeng-Fiema Monkey Sanctuary, Ghana. She then worked with Daniel Sellen for her PhD in Evolutionary Anthropology at the University of Toronto, and collaborated with Anne Katzenberg (University of Calgary) and David Watts (Yale University) to investigate infant care, nutritional development, and lactation in chimpanzees at Ngogo, Kibale National Park, Uganda. Through this work, Iulia successfully applied a novel behavioural and fecal stable isotope method of assessing infant dietary intake, which allowed her to more reliably estimate weaning and to assess maternal investment through lactation effort in wild chimpanzees. Iulia is defending her PhD dissertation on May 11, 2017. Iulia will continue to use a combined behavioural and isotopic approach, in addition to nutritional composition analyses of transitional foods, to investigate dietary and social correlates of weaning rates, infant health and mortality, and female reproduction in chimpanzees at Ngogo. Iulia's work will contribute to answer questions about how different patterns of infant care and development affect the fitness of wild primate mothers and their offspring.