Maropeng hosts Broom Colloquium

  • November 30, 2011

Maropeng was thrilled to host the Royal Society of South Africa’s Broom Colloquium on Saturday 26 November. The top scientists behind some of the more recent palaeontological discoveries gathered for the day to present papers on a wide range of diverse research issues.

The Broom Colloquium served to commemorate the death of renowned palaeontologist and medical doctor, Professor Robert Broom, who passed away 60 years ago.

The Colloquium was an initiative of the Royal Society of South Africa, in partnership with Maropeng, to honour Broom in the context of recent discoveries and research on hominids and other fossils from the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site.

Maropeng curator, Lindsay Marshall, said that hosting the Colloquium is a prestigious honour for Maropeng. “It adds a huge amount of credibility to Maropeng’s role not only as a tourism destination but as a place where international scientific discussion can take place.”

A number of renowned local and international palaeontologists spoke at the event including amongst others Professor Lee Berger and Professor Ron Clarke from the Institute of Human Evolution at Wits University, as well as French palaeontologists Dr Brigitte Senut, Dr Martin Pickford and Dominique Gommery.

Broom (born November 30, 1866 in Paisley, Scotland; died in Pretoria on April 6, 1951) trained as a medical doctor but spent most of his life in South Africa as a palaeontologist. Initially he worked on mammal-like reptiles from the Karoo. From 1936 until his death, he worked on fossils from Sterkfontein, Swartkrans, Kromdraai, Bolt’s Farm, Minnaar’s Site as well as many other localities. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1920.

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