Liverpool Skylilne

Natural Sciences and Psychology

Dr Richard Jennings

Dr Richard Jennings

Telephone: 0151 231 2421


My archaeological career began in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Auckland, where I graduated with a BA in Anthropology and Near Eastern History and a MA in GIS Applications in Archaeology. Like many kiwis, I then travelled aboard to see the world and to gain some overseas work experience. The northern hemisphere has since become my home. I spent a good few years excavating on commercial archaeological projects in the UK and Ireland and on a range of fascinating research projects, including the Palaeolithic site of Boxgrove, England, Buittle medieval motte and Bailey, Scotland, Tell Brak, Syria, and on Neanderthal levels in Gorham’s and Vanguard Caves in Gibraltar. The latter sites inspired me to undertake a doctorate at the University of Oxford on the analysis of Neanderthal and Homo sapiens site distributions and environments of southern Iberia in the late Pleistocene, and on the excavation of Palaeolithic levels in Higueral de Valleja Cave, Cadiz Province.

On the completion of my doctorate in 2008, I gained invaluable experience as an excavation director and GIS officer by working for two years on many cultural heritage projects with Kilkenny Archaeology in Ireland, including the excavation a prehistoric cemetery complex and the design and implementation of an urban archaeological database of Kilkenny City. I then took up short term lecturing positions at Oxford Brookes University, The Department of Continuing Education, Oxford, and at University College Cork, where I designed and taught modules on Human Origins and World Archaeology. While in Cork I became involved on two Palaeolithic research projects in the southern Caucasus and the Arabian Peninsula. I subsequently moved back to Oxford to become a GIS and climate modelling specialist on the Palaeodeserts Project, which explores human prehistory and environments in Arabia, and the Eamena Project, which records endangered sites in the Middle East and North Africa using Arches, an innovative open source heritage management database developed by the Getty Conservation Institute and the World Monuments Fund.

In 2016 I was appointed to a senior lectureship in Archaeology in the School of Natural Sciences and Psychology at Liverpool John Moores University. Gibraltar remains a central part of my research and teaching activities. I am an excavation director on the Gorham’s Cave Project and bring students from LJMU for accredited training in archaeological field survey methods and excavation techniques. My knowledge of spatial databases has enabled a further collaboration to develop between the Gibraltar Museum and LJMU whereby we are in the process of designing a heritage database for Gibraltar using Arches, beginning with its World Heritage Site. Elsewhere, I’m part of an Arches project focused on recording cultural heritage damage in Syria with the University of Durham, and another on mapping early archaeological sites of the Pacific with the University of Waikato. I am a co-Principal Investigator of the Dungarvan Valley Caves Project, which was awarded funding by the Royal Irish Academy to excavate Pleistocene deposits in Ballynamintra Cave, Ireland.

Academic appointments

Senior Lecturer in Arcaeology, Natural Sciences and Psychology, Liverpool John Moores University, 2016 - present
Postdoctoral Researcher, School of Archaeology, University of Oxford, 2013 - 2016
Lecturer in Archaeology, Department of Archaeology, University College Cork, 2011 - 2013
Lecturer in Archaeology, Department of Anthropology and Geography, Oxford Brookes University, 2010 - 2011
Lecturer in Archaeology, Department of Continuing Education, University of Oxford, 2010 - 2011


Journal article

Shipton C, Blinkhorn J, Breeze PS, Cuthbertson P, Drake N, Groucutt HS, Jennings RP, Parton A, Scerri EML, Alsharekh A, Petraglia MD. 2018. Acheulean technology and landscape use at Dawadmi, central Arabia PLOS ONE, 13 >DOI >Link

Groucutt HS, Scerri EML, Amor K, Shipton C, Jennings RP, Parton A, Clark-Balzan L, Alsharekh A, Petraglia MD. 2017. Middle Palaeolithic raw material procurement and early stage reduction at Jubbah, Saudi Arabia Archaeological Research in Asia, 9 :44-62 >DOI

Guagnin M, Jennings R, Eager H, Parton A, Stimpson C, Stepanek C, Pfeiffer M, Groucutt HS, Drake NA, Alsharekh A, Petraglia MD. 2016. Rock art imagery as a proxy for Holocene environmental change: A view from Shuwaymis, NW Saudi Arabia Holocene, 26 :1822-1834 >DOI

Jennings RP, Parton A, Clark-Balzan L, White TS, Groucutt HS, Breeze PS, Parker AG, Drake NA, Petraglia MD. 2016. Human occupation of the northern Arabian interior during early Marine Isotope Stage 3 JOURNAL OF QUATERNARY SCIENCE, 31 :953-966 >DOI >Link

Finlayson C, Finlayson S, Giles Guzman F, Sánchez Marco A, Finlayson G, Jennings R, Giles Pacheco F, Rodriguez Vidal J. 2016. Using birds as indicators of Neanderthal environmental quality: Gibraltar and Zafarraya compared Quaternary International, 421 :32-45 >DOI

Groucutt HS, Breeze P, Drake NA, Jennings R, Parton A, White T, Shipton C, Clark-Balzan L, Al-Omari A, Cuthbertson P, Wedage OMC, Bernal MA, Alsharekh A, Petraglia MD. 2016. The middle palaeolithic of the Nejd, Saudi Arabia Journal of Field Archaeology, 41 :131-147 >DOI

Stimpson CM, Lister A, Parton A, Clark-Balzan L, Breeze PS, Drake NA, Groucutt HS, Jennings R, Scerri EML, White TS, Zahir M, Duval M, Grün R, Al-Omari A, Al Murayyi KSM, Zalmout IS, Mufarreh YA, Memesh AM, Petraglia MD. 2016. Middle Pleistocene vertebrate fossils from the Nefud Desert, Saudi Arabia: Implications for biogeography and palaeoecology Quaternary Science Reviews, 143 :13-36 >DOI

Breeze PS, Groucutt HS, Drake NA, White TS, Jennings RP, Petraglia MD. 2016. Palaeohydrological corridors for hominin dispersals in the Middle East ~250-70,000 years ago Quaternary Science Reviews, 144 :155-185 >DOI

Groucutt HS, White TS, Clark-Balzan L, Parton A, Crassard R, Shipton C, Jennings RP, Parker AG, Breeze PS, Scerri EML, Alsharekh A, Petraglia MD. 2015. Human occupation of the Arabian Empty Quarter during MIS 5: evidence from Mundafan Al-Buhayrah, Saudi Arabia QUATERNARY SCIENCE REVIEWS, 119 :116-135 >DOI >Link

Groucutt HS, Petraglia MD, Bailey G, Scerri EML, Parton A, Clark-Balzan L, Jennings RP, Lewis L, Blinkhorn J, Drake NA, Breeze PS, Inglis RH, Deves MH, Meredith-Williams M, Boivin N, Thomas MG, Scally A. 2015. Rethinking the Dispersal of Homo sapiens out of Africa EVOLUTIONARY ANTHROPOLOGY, 24 :149-164 >DOI >Link

Stimpson CM, Breeze PS, Clark-Balzan L, Groucutt HS, Jennings R, Parton A, Scerri E, White TS, Petraglia MD. 2015. Stratified Pleistocene vertebrates with a new record of a jaguar-sized pantherine (Panthera cf. gombaszogensis) from northern Saudi Arabia QUATERNARY INTERNATIONAL, 382 :168-180 >DOI >Link

Parton A, White TS, Parker AG, Breeze PS, Jennings R, Groucutt HS, Petraglia MD. 2015. Orbital-scale climate variability in Arabia as a potential motor for human dispersals QUATERNARY INTERNATIONAL, 382 :82-97 >DOI >Link

Scerri EML, Breeze PS, Parton A, Groucutt HS, White TS, Stimpson C, Clark-Balzan L, Jennings R, Alsharekh A, Petraglia MD. 2015. Middle to Late Pleistocene human habitation in the western Nefud Desert, Saudi Arabia QUATERNARY INTERNATIONAL, 382 :200-214 >DOI >Link

Breeze PS, Drake NA, Groucutt HS, Parton A, Jennings RP, White TS, Clark-Balzan L, Shipton C, Scerri EML, Stimpson CM, Crassard R, Hilbert Y, Alsharekh A, Al-Omari A, Petraglia MD. 2015. Remote sensing and GIS techniques for reconstructing Arabian palaeohydrology and identifying archaeological sites QUATERNARY INTERNATIONAL, 382 :98-119 >DOI >Link

Groucutt HS, Scerri EML, Lewis L, Clark-Balzan L, Blinkhorn J, Jennings RP, Parton A, Petraglia MD. 2015. Stone tool assemblages and models for the dispersal of Homo sapiens out of Africa QUATERNARY INTERNATIONAL, 382 :8-30 >DOI >Link

Jennings RP, Shipton C, Breeze P, Cuthbertson P, Bernal MA, Wedage WMCO, Drake NA, White TS, Groucutt HS, Parton A, Clark-Balzan L, Stimpson C, al Omari A-A, Alsharekh A, Petraglia MD. 2015. Multi-scale Acheulean landscape survey in the Arabian Desert QUATERNARY INTERNATIONAL, 382 :58-81 >DOI >Link

Jennings RP, Singarayer J, Stone EJ, Krebs-Kanzow U, Khon V, Nisancioglu KH, Pfeiffer M, Zhang X, Parker A, Parton A, Groucutt HS, White TS, Drake NA, Petraglia MD. 2015. The greening of Arabia: Multiple opportunities for human occupation of the Arabian Peninsula during the Late Pleistocene inferred from an ensemble of climate model simulations QUATERNARY INTERNATIONAL, 382 :181-199 >DOI >Link

Groucutt HS, Shipton C, Alsharekh A, Jennings R, Scerri EML, Petraglia MD. 2015. Late Pleistocene lakeshore settlement in northern Arabia: Middle Palaeolithic technology from Jebel Katefeh, Jubbah QUATERNARY INTERNATIONAL, 382 :215-236 >DOI >Link

Guagnin M, Jennings RP, Clark-Balzan L, Groucutt HS, Parton A, Petraglia MD. 2015. Hunters and herders: Exploring the Neolithic transition in the rock art of Shuwaymis, Saudi Arabia Archaeological Research in Asia, 4 :3-16 >DOI

Moncel MH, Pleurdeau D, Pinhasi R, Yeshurun R, Agapishvili T, Chevalier T, LeBourdonnec FX, Poupeau G, Nomade S, Jennings R, Higham T, Tushubramishvili N, Lordkipanidze D. 2015. The middle palaeolithic record of Georgia: A synthesis of the technological, economic and paleoanthropological aspects Anthropologie (Czech Republic), 53 :93-125

Jennings R, Parton A, Groucutt HS, Clark-Balzan L, Breeze P, Drake NA, Alsharekh A, Petraglia MD. 2014. High-resolution geospatial surveying techniques provide new insights into rock-art landscapes at Shuwaymis, Saudi Arabia Arabian Archaeology and Epigraphy, 25 :1-21 >DOI

Rodriguez-Vidal J, d'Errico F, Giles Pacheco F, Blasco R, Rosell J, Jennings RP, Queffelec A, Finlayson G, Fa DA, Gutierrez Lopez JM, Carrion JS, Jose Negro J, Finlayson S, Caceres LM, Bernal MA, Fernandez Jimenez S, Finlayson C. 2014. A rock engraving made by Neanderthals in Gibraltar PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, 111 :13301-13306 >DOI >Link

Scerri EML, Groucutt HS, Jennings RP, Petraglia MD. 2014. Unexpected technological heterogeneity in northern Arabia indicates complex Late Pleistocene demography at the gateway to Asia JOURNAL OF HUMAN EVOLUTION, 75 :125-142 >DOI >Link

Scerri EML, Drake NA, Jennings R, Groucutt HS. 2014. Earliest evidence for the structure of Homo sapiens populations in Africa QUATERNARY SCIENCE REVIEWS, 101 :207-216 >DOI >Link

Hilbert YH, White TS, Parton A, Clark-Balzan L, Crassard R, Groucutt HS, Jennings RP, Breeze P, Parker A, Shipton C, Al-Omari A, Alsharekh AM, Petraglia MD. 2014. Epipalaeolithic occupation and palaeoenvironments of the southern Nefud desert, Saudi Arabia, during the Terminal Pleistocene and Early Holocene JOURNAL OF ARCHAEOLOGICAL SCIENCE, 50 :460-474 >DOI >Link

Crassard R, Petraglia MD, Drake NA, Breeze P, Gratuze B, Alsharekh A, Arbach M, Groucutt HS, Khalidi L, Michelsen N, Robin CJ, Schiettecatte J. 2013. Middle Palaeolithic and Neolithic Occupations around Mundafan Palaeolake, Saudi Arabia: Implications for Climate Change and Human Dispersals PLOS ONE, 8 >DOI >Link

Blain H-A, Gleed-Owen CP, Lopez-Garcia JM, Sebastian Carrion J, Jennings R, Finlayson G, Finlayson C, Giles-Pacheco F. 2013. Climatic conditions for the last Neanderthals: Herpetofaunal record of Gorham's Cave, Gibraltar JOURNAL OF HUMAN EVOLUTION, 64 :289-299 >DOI >Link

Crassard R, Petraglia MD, Parker AG, Parton A, Roberts RG, Jacobs Z, Alsharekh A, Al-Omari A, Breeze P, Drake NA, Groucutt HS, Jennings R, Regagnon E, Shipton C. 2013. Beyond the Levant: First Evidence of a Pre-Pottery Neolithic Incursion into the Nefud Desert, Saudi Arabia PLOS ONE, 8 >DOI >Link

Jennings RP, Shipton C, Al-Omari A, Alsharekh AM, Crassard R, Groucutt H, Petraglia MD. 2013. Rock art landscapes beside the Jubbah palaeolake, Saudi Arabia ANTIQUITY, 87 :666-683 >DOI >Link

Petraglia MD, Alsharekh A, Breeze P, Clarkson C, Crassard R, Drake NA, Groucutt HS, Jennings R, Parker AG, Parton A, Roberts RG, Shipton C, Matheson C, al-Omari A, Veall M-A. 2012. Hominin Dispersal into the Nefud Desert and Middle Palaeolithic Settlement along the Jubbah Palaeolake, Northern Arabia PLOS ONE, 7 >DOI >Link

Jennings R, Finlayson C, Fa D, Finlayson G. 2011. Southern Iberia as a refuge for the last Neanderthal populations JOURNAL OF BIOGEOGRAPHY, 38 :1873-1885 >DOI >Link

Jennings RP, Pacheco FG, Barton RNE, Collcutt SN, Gale R, Gleed-Owen CP, Lopez JMG, Higham TFG, Parker A, Price C, Rhodes E, Perez AS, Schwenninger JL, Turner E. 2009. New dates and palaeoenvironmental evidence for the Middle to Upper Palaeolithic occupation of Higueral de Valleja Cave, southern Spain QUATERNARY SCIENCE REVIEWS, 28 :830-839 >DOI >Link

Ladefoged TN, Graves MW, Jennings RP. 1996. Dryland agricultural expansion and intensification in Kohala, Hawai'i Island ANTIQUITY, 70 :861-880 >DOI >Link

Conference publication

Vafadari A, Philip G, Jennings R. 2017. Damage assessment and monitoring of cultural heritage places in a disaster and post-disaster event - A case study of Syria International Archives of the Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences - ISPRS Archives, 42 :695-701 >DOI