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Keith Malcom Prufer

Director, Environmental Archaeology Lab; Convener, Archaeology

Photo: Keith Prufer

Archaeology,  Evolutionary Anthropology

At UNM since 
Skype: 505-715-6629

Recent Courses:

  • Introduction to Anthropology (ANTH 101)
  • Ancient Mexico (ANTH 376/576)
  • Science and Archaeology (ANTH 570)


Southern Illinois University Carbondale, PhD 2002
Dissertation: “Communities, Caves, and Ritual Specialists: A Study of Sacred Space in the Maya Mountains of Southern Belize”


Environmental archaeology, paleoecology, paleoclimate, Mesoamerica

Recent Publications:

Prufer, K.M., C. Meredith, A. Alsgaard, T. Denehey, and D. J. Kennett. The Paleoindian Chronology of Tzib Te Yux Rockshelter in the Rio Blanco Valley of Southern Belize.  Research Reports in Belizean Archaeology 14, 2017

Lechleitner, F.A., S.E. Breitenbach, H. Ridley, Y. Asmerom, K. Rehfeld, K.M. Prufer, D.J. Kennett, V. Aquino, V. Polyak, N. Marwan, G. Haug, T Eglinton, J. Baldini.  A persistent low- to mid-latitude hydrologic seesaw over the past millennium. Nature Scientific Reports.  2017

Jordan, J. and K.M. Prufer. Identifying Domestic Ceramic Production in the Maya Lowlands: A Case Study from Uxbenká, Belize.  Latin American Antiquity, 2017.  DOI:

Prufer, Keith M., A. E. Thompson, C. R. Meredith, B. J. Culleton, J. M. Jordan, C. E. Ebert, B. Winterhalder, and D. J. Kennett. "The Classic Period Maya transition from an ideal free to an ideal despotic settlement system at the polity of Uxbenká." Journal of Anthropological Archaeology 45, 2017

Baldini, L., J.U.L. Baldini, J. McElwaine, A. Frappier, Y. Asmerom, K. Liu, K.M. Prufer, H. Ridley, V. Polyak, D.J. Kennett, C. Macpherson, V. Aquino, J.J. Awe, S. Breitenbach. Persistent northward North Atlantic tropical cyclone track migration over the past five centuries. Scientific Reports, 2016

Prufer, K.M., A. E. Thompson, D. J. Kennett.  Evaluating Airborne LiDAR for Detecting Settlements and Modified Landscapes in Disturbed Tropical Environments at Uxbenká, Belize.  Journal of Archaeological Science 57, 2015.