Colin D. Wren, Ph.D.

Colin Wren

Colin D. Wren, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor


Colin D. Wren is an archaeologist who joined the Department of Anthropology at UCCS in 2015. His training has included a mix of recent New World (sub-arctic Quebec, 400-4500 years ago) and much older Old World evidence surrounding major hominin dispersal events (up to 1.8 million years ago). Two articles stemming from his doctoral research at McGill University have been published, "The role of spatial foresight in models of hominin dispersal" in the Journal of Human Evolution and "Does environmental knowledge inhibit hominin dispersal?" in Human Biology. Dr. Wren is interested in reconstructing past mobility behavior, the evolution of complex cognition, human-environment interactions, agent-based modeling, GIS-based landscape archaeology, and more specifically, the role of human perception of the environment in mobility and dispersal. Dr. Wren's on-going projects include models of South African foraging behavior during periods relevant to the evolution of Homo sapiens and the impacts of climatic variability during the Last Glacial Maximum (ca. 20 thousand years ago) on foraging behavior in Western Europe.


Postdoc, Institute of Human Origins, Arizona State University

PhD, Archaeology, McGill University

MSc, GIS and Spatial Analysis in Archaeology, University College London

BA, Anthropology, McGill University

Select Publications

Wren, C.D., Costopoulos, A., 2015. Does Environmental Knowledge Inhibit Hominin Dispersal? Human Biology 87, 205-223.

Shook, E., C.D. Wren, C.W. Marean, A.J. Potts, J. Franklin, F. Engelbrecht, D. O’Neal, et al. 2015. “Paleoscape Model of Coastal South Africa During Modern Human Origins: Progress in Scaling and Coupling Climate, Vegetation, and Agent-Based Models on XSEDE.” In Proceedings of the 2015 Annual Conference on Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment. New York, NY: ACM International Conference Proceeding Series.

Wren, C.D., J. Z. Xue., A. Costopoulos, & A. Burke. 2014. The role of spatial foresight on models of hominin dispersal. Journal of Human Evolution 69:70-78.

Costopoulos, A., S. Vaneeckhout, J. Okkonen, E. Hulse, I. Paberzyte, and C.D. Wren. 2012. Social complexity in the mid-Holocene northeastern Bothnian Gulf. European Journal of Archaeology 15(1): 41-60.

Ames, C., A. Costopoulos, C. D. Wren. 2010. 8,000 Years of Technological Change in the Gulf of Georgia: Is There a Major Transition at 4850 cal B.P.? Canadian Journal of Archaeology 34(1): 32-63.