Dr. Jeff Rose has led an international team of scientists investigating human origins in the Arabian Peninsula since 2000. His team has made a series of landmark archaeological and genetic discoveries in the Sultanate of Oman that rewrite the earliest chapters in the history of our species. These findings have been featured in documentary series for BBC 1, BBC 2, PBS, SBS Australia, Arte, and National Geographic. “Jeff Rose has been looking for evidence of Afro-Arabian links for a long time, working in places that are almost unimaginably difficult to conduct research,” remarks one colleague, “this is an exemplary case of hard work paying off, something to which aspiring students of archaeology should pay close attention.”
Jeff and his team were quick to harness social media as a platform for sharing their remote fieldwork discoveries in real time. In 2012, Jeff was given the lifetime award of National Geographic Emerging Explorer in recognition of his pioneering fieldwork and enthusiasm for communicating this research to a wider audience.
His CV is an impressive tome of academic achievements, teaching awards, successful research grants, high impact publications, and public outreach. The one thing Jeff is more passionate about than archaeology is making it relevant in the present. He publishes his work in both scientific journals and popular magazines, and has just completed an introductory textbook on human evolution that is being translated into Arabic. Jeff has worked as a presenter, writer, and series consultant for a variety of documentaries on early Christian manuscripts (Bible Hunters), Biblical archaeology (Legend Hunter), the Great Flood myth (Diving into Noah’s Flood), and the rise of civilisations (First Civilizations), among others (full credits below). In collaboration with different universities across the world, he leads annual field schools in Oman that teach prehistory and archaeological fieldwork methods.
Jeff’s explorations take him deep into the deserts of Arabia, once the homeland of the earliest modern humans, now the dwelling place of drilling rigs and oil pipelines. He works with regional governments and environmental protection groups to ensure that these pristine landscapes remain undamaged in the face of rapid development.
Jeff was born in Princeton, New Jersey in 1975. Exasperated by his predilection for digging holes in the back garden, his parents sent him off to his first proper excavation at the age of 14 to hone his shovelling skills. To their dismay, it was love at first dig and he has since spent the last 30 years participating on archaeological research projects in America, Wales, Ukraine, Israel, Portugal, Yemen, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, and Oman.
Before joining the Ronin Institute in 2013, Jeff taught as a Senior Lecturer at Oxford Brookes University. He holds a BA in Classics, a MA in Archaeology, a second MA in Anthropology, and a PhD in Anthropology. Jeff’s interests cover a broad range of subjects: from human origins to early civilisations, ancient technologies to modern genetics, earth sciences to underwater archaeology, mythology to linguistics. He is knowledgeable in Middle Eastern politics and religions, speaks Hebrew and Arabic, and lived in Oman, Israel, and Yemen for over a decade.
All of Jeff’s aforementioned endeavours are contingent upon local surfing conditions. When there are waves, riding the ocean takes priority over ancient history. When the sea does not produce waves, Jeff tries to stay relatively sane through yoga, gardening, and serving his feline keepers.