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Professor Walter Hartwig, PhD

Walter Hartwig

In March 2007, a trial began in the Supreme Court of New South Wales to determine defences and damages following a jury’s 2003 finding that the Australian Broadcasting Corporation had defamed Jeremy Griffith and Tim Macartney-Snape in a 1995 ABC-TV Four Corners television program. During the trial, four international scientific experts, including Professor Hartwig (photo), took the stand in defence of the scientific and scholarly standard of Jeremy Griffith’s work.

From the report by Professor Hartwig tendered at the trial:

‘…the line of reasoning in Beyond the Human Condition is exactly continuous…[Jeremy Griffith] accurately accounts for data from the fossil record (as per our knowledge of it in 1991), from the behavioral ecology of living primates (especially great ape behavior), and from comparative anatomy...I am able to relate his arguments to my own understanding of the issues he raises. His focus on the evolution of consciousness is a central theme in evolutionary anthropology. His attempts to explain the evolution of bipedality, matriarchal social systems, comparative primate life histories (how long is infancy, childhood, adolescence, etc) draw from established and central references on these topics in the professional literature (such as the publications of Adolph Schultz, Roger Lewin, Adrienne Zihlman, Frances White, Randall Susman and Diane Fossey).’ Professor Hartwig said his research revealed the inclusion of Mr Griffith’s work on a list compiled by professors at two American universities that indicated ‘its scholarly value is comparable to several of the most celebrated publications in biology.’

Professor Hartwig’s Profile:

Associate Professor and Chair of Department of Basic Sciences, College of Osteopathic Medicine, Touro University, California.

Professor Walter Hartwig is a physical (biological) anthropologist. He obtained his PhD from the University of California - Berkeley and is currently an Associate Professor and Chair of Basic Sciences at the Touro University - California College of Osteopathic Medicine.

His research specialty is human/primate evolution. He is particularly interested in how the Primate Order arose and evolved, principally as seen through the fossil record, and in how questions about evolution, particularly primate and human evolution, are framed, executed and interpreted scientifically.

He tries to account for current trends or consensus opinions in terms of how data have accumulated over time and is an advocate for the value of inductive reasoning in scientific inquiry.

He edited a research volume entitled The Primate Fossil Record in 2002 (Cambridge University Press) which has been widely reviewed and cited as an important reference work on this topic. He has also published on the relationship between science, as a method of analysis and understanding, and topics of human evolution (e.g. Chamberlain and Hartwig, ‘Thomas Kuhn and palaeoanthropology’, Evolutionary Anthropology, 1999).

In 2007 Professor Hartwig had authored over 45 scientific articles and book chapters on comparative anatomy, primate evolution and the history of sciences.

He has served for the last several years on the Executive Committee of the American Academy for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Pacific Division.

Professor Hartwig has a PhD in Anthropology from the University of California - Berkeley and a BA in Anthropology from the University of Missouri.