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Pei-Lin Yu

alt="Pei-Lin Yu collage banner"

alt="Pei-Lin Yu studio portrait"CONTACT INFORMATION:

Pei-Lin Yu
Associate Professor
Phone: (208) 426-3059
Office: Mathematics Building, Room 137A


**NEW BOOK** Relevance and Application of Heritage in Contemporary Society,-tame,-and-in-between-traditional-agricultural-knowledge-of-taiwan-indigenous-people
View Pei-Lin Yu’s Curriculum Vita
View Pei-Lin Yu’s Publications
Cupule Stone video

View Pei-Lin Yu’s: Behavioral Ecology and the Evolution of Indigenous Taiwanese Farming



Access Dr. Yu’s blog on the people, landscapes, food, and cultures of Taiwan along with updates on the Taiwan First Farmers Project at



Ph.D., Anthropology, Southern Methodist University
M.A., Archaeology, Southern Methodist University
B.S., Anthropology, University of New Mexico


Pei-Lin Yu is of Taiwanese-American heritage and grew up in Albuquerque, New Mexico. She obtained her B.S. from University of New Mexico, and M.A. and PhD from Southern Methodist University under the advisorship of Lewis Binford. Her dissertation studied variability in the transition from foraging to agriculture across the American West, and developed an hypothesis about the relationship between early farming and pre-existing dependence on wild plant foods.

Dr. Yu has conducted ethnoarchaeological research on technology and mobility while living with a hunter-gatherer tribe in Venezuela, and has worked as a federal archaeologist for the US Forest Service, the Bureau of Reclamation, and the National Park Service. She has also worked as Assistant Professor of Anthropology for California State University Sacramento, and as that university’s Director for the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act Program. Dr. Yu has worked in the American Southwest, the Southern Appalachians, the Pacific Northwest, the Northern Rockies, and in central China. Most recently Dr. Yu gained experience in managing a national network of scientists and federal research partners. She looks forward to opening up a new research program in Taiwan, working with Taiwanese archaeologists and indigenous communities there to help connect science and cultural heritage in that unique island.


Ethnoarchaeology, human response to climate change, protected areas and Cultural Heritage law and policy in the U.S., South America, and Asia, vulnerable populations in the Americas and Asia, hunting and gathering peoples, gender and technology, cultural transitions, traditional ecological knowledge, heritage values and repatriation practices, indigenous archaeology.

alt="Fisheries biologist Richard Edwards and grandson Keagan Johnson take a look at 'Rivers, Fish, and the People', edited by Pei-Lin Yu. Photo taken by BSU Anthropology Graduate Julia Edwards, January 2016"

Fisheries biologist Richard Edwards and grandson Keagan Johnson take a look at ‘Rivers, Fish, and the People’, edited by Pei-Lin Yu. Photo taken by BSU Anthropology Graduate Julia Edwards, January 2016


  • Introduction to Archaeology
  • Introduction to Human Evolution
  • Human Evolution Lab
  • Hunter-Gatherers in Global Perspective
  • Cultural Resource Management in Theory and Practice
  • Prehistory of North America
  • Archaeology of the Pacific Northwest
  • Archaeology and Post-Pleistocene Adaptations
  • Research Designs in Anthropology
  • Hunter-Gatherer Ethnoarchaeology
  • The Human Diet in Evolutionary Perspective workshop
  • Living Ethnoarchaeology workshop
  • Gender in Archaeology workshop
  • Archaeology of Climate Change workshop