Dr. Yoshi Maezumi

Research Group Leader
Department of Archaeology
+49 3641 686-720

Main Focus

Dr. S. Yoshi Maezumi is a paleoecologist who studies the long-term interactions between humans and the environment. She utilizes multiple sediment-based paleoecological proxies to examine long-term drivers of fire and vegetation. She combines paleoecological archives from lake records with archaeobotanical, archaeological, paleoclimatological, and botanical datasets to examine the legacy of past humans on modern ecosystems.

Curriculum Vitae

Dr S. Yoshi Maezumi is, an Archaeologist, Paleoecologist, National Geographic Explorer, and Former Marie Curie Fellow specializing in past human-environment interactions in the tropics. She has an double-bachelors Degree in Anthropological Archaeology and Religious Studies from the University of California San Diego, a Masters Degree in Analytical Archaeology from California State University Long Beach, and a Doctorate in Physical Geography with a concentration in Paleoecology from the University of Utah, USA. After completing her PhD reconstructing past ecosystems in the Bolivian Amazon, she held a three-year post-doctoral fellowship in the Department of Archaeology at the University of Exeter, UK focused on the legacy of ancient human land use on modern forests in the Amazon. The results of Maezumi’s post-doctoral research were published in high-impact journals including Nature PlantsScienceNature Ecology and Evolution, and Science Advances.

Following her post-doctoral research, she held one-year Lectureship position teaching on Climate Change in the Tropics in the Department of Geography and Geology at the University of the West Indies, Jamaica. During this time she was awarded a National Geographic Early Career Research Grant for her project: Jamaica a Last Island Frontier. This research implements an interdisciplinary approach combining archaeology, archaeobotany, paleoecology, and paleoclimatology to examine the influence of human colonization on island biogeography and fire activity in Jamaica. She was recently awarded a British Ecological Society Grant to expand here research in the Caribbean with a new project examining ancient resource management in Curaçao. Maezumi was then awarded a 2-year Marie Curie Research Fellowship at the Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics at the University of Amsterdam. Her project FIRE: Fire Intensity in Rainforest Ecotones, developed a state-of-the-art methodology to reconstruct past fire intensity. 

As the Group Leader of Palaeoecology in the Department of Archaeology, Maezumi implements her multidisciplinary background in Archaeology, Archaeobotany, Palaeoecology, and Palaeoclimatology to examine the legacies of past human-environment interactions in tropical regions around the globe. You can follow Maezumi’s ongoing research projects and fieldwork adventures (including finding scorpions under her pillow in the Caribbean) via:

Website: http://yoshimaezumi.wixsite.com/paleoecology

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/yoshi_maezumi

Twitter: https://twitter.com/yoshi_maezumi


Snitker, G., Roos, C.I., Sullivan, A.P., Maezumi, S.Y., Bird, D.W., Michael R. Coughlan, M.R., Derr, K.M., Gassaway, L., Klimaszewski-Patterson, A., Loehman, R.A. (In Press). A new collaborative agenda for archaeology and fire science. Nature Ecology and Evolution.

Umberto, L. l Arroyo-Kalin, M., Huisman, H., Geraldes Teixeira, W., Clement, C.R., Francisco Brazão Vieira Alho, C., Almeida, F., Helena Cunha Anjos, L., Bronk Ramsey, C., Brown G., Costa, M., Cunha, L., Denevan, W.M., Fontana, A., Glaser, B., Hecht, S., Jarosch, K.A., Braga, Junqueira, A. B., Kater, T., Kuyper, T.W., Leh,ann, J., Lima, H.P.,  Macedo, R. S., Madella, M., Maezumi, S.Y., Mayle,. F.E., McKey, D., de Paula Moraes, C., Morcote-Rios, G., Neves, E., Pugliese, F., Pupim, F., Raczka, M.F., Py-Daniel, A.R., Riris, P., Rodrigues, L., Rostain, S. Schmidt, M., Shock, M.P., Sprafke, T., Tamanaha, E.K., Vidal-Torrado, P., Villagran, X.S., Watling, J., Weber, S.L. (In Press). Evidence confirms an anthropic origin of Amazonian Dark Earths (Comment to Silva L.C.R. et al. 2021). Nature  Communications. 

Scerri, E.M.L, Roberts, P., Maezumi, S.Y., Malhi, Y. (2022) Tropical Forests in the Deep Human Past. Philosophical Transactions B.  DOI: 10.1098/rstb.2020.0500

Maezumi, S.Y., Elliott, S., Robinson, M., Jaimes Betancourt, C., De Souza, J.G., Alves, D., Grosvenor, M., Hilbert, L., Urrego, D., Gosling, W.D., Iriarte, J. (2022). Legacies of Indigenous Land use and Cultural Burning in the Bolivian Amazon. Philosophical Transactions B. DOI: 10.1098/rstb.2020.0499

Elliott, S., Maezumi, S.Y.,  Robinson, M., J., Burn, M.J., Gosling, W.D., Mickleburgh, H. L., Walters, S., Beier, Z.J.M. (In Press). Reconstructing Pre-Columbian Land use in Jamaica.  Journal of Island and Coastal Archaeology.

Della Libera, M.E., Novello, V.E., Cruz, F.W., Orrison, R., Vuille, M., Maezumi, S.Y., de Souza, J., Rodrigues, J.C., Pereira, J. L., Campos, S., Ampuero, A., Utida, G., Stríkis, N. M., Stumpf, C. F., Azevedo, V., Zhang, H., Edwards, R.L., Cheng, H. (2022). Paleoclimatic and paleoenvironmental changes in Amazonian lowlands over the last three millennia. Quaternary Science Reviews. DOI: 10.1016/j.quascirev.2022.107383

Gosling, W.D., Maezumi, S.Y., Heijink, B.M., Nascimento, M., Raczka, M.F., van der Sande, M.T., Bush, M .B., McMichael, C.N.H. (2021). Scarce fire activity in north and north-western Amazonian forests during the last 10,000 years. Plant Ecology and Diversity.DOI: 10.1080/17550874.2021.2008040

Fletcher, M.S., Romano, A., Connor, S., Mariani, M., Maezumi, S.Y. (2021). Catastrophic bushfires, Indigenous fire knowledge and reframing science in southeast Australia. Fire.  DOI: 10.3390/fire4030061

Maezumi, S.Y., Gosling, W.D., Kirschner, J., Chevalier, M., Cornelissen, H.L., Heinecke, T., McMichael, C.N.H. (2021). A modern analogue matching approach to characterise fire temperatures and plant species from charcoal. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology. DOI: 10.1016/j.palaeo.2021.110580

Bush, M.B., M.N. Nascimento, M.N., Åkesson, C.M., Cardenes, G., Maezumi, S.Y., Behling, H., Correa-Metrio, A. Church, W., Huisman, S., Kelly, T., Mayle, F.E., McMichael, C.N.H. (2021). Widespread reforestation preceded European influence on Amazonia. Science. DOI: 10.1126/science.abf3870

Kukla, T., Ahlström, A., Maezumi, S.Y., Chevalier, M., Lu, Z., Chamberlain, C. P. (2021). Amazon Resilience to Past and Present Drying. Global and Planetary Change. DOI: 10.1016/j.gloplacha.2021.103520

Carter, V. A., Brunelle, A., Power, M.J., DeRose, J.R., Bekker, M. F., Hart, I., Brewer, S., Spangler, J., Robinson, E., Abbott, M., Maezumi, S.Y., Codding, B.C. (2021). Legacies of Indigenous land use shaped past wildfire regimes in the Basin-Plateau Region, U.S.ACommunications Earth & Environment. DOI: 10.1038/s43247-021-00137-3  

Robinson, M., Betancourt, C.J., Elliott, S., Maezumi, S.Y., Hilbert, L.M., Alves, D., De Souza, J.G., Iriarte, J. (2020). Anthropogenic soil and settlement organisation in the Bolivian Amazon. Geoarchaeology. DOI: 10.1002/gea.21839

Barnett, R.L., Charman, D.J.,  Johns, C.,  Ward, S.L., Bevan, A., Bradley, S., Camidge, K., Fyfe, R.M.,  Gehrels, W.R., Gehrels, M.J.,  Hatton, J.,  Khan, N.S., Marshall, P., Maezumi, S. Y., Mills, S., Mulville, J., Perez, M.,  Roberts, H.M., Scourse, J.D., Shepherd, F., Stevens, T. (2020). Non-linear landscape and cultural response to sea-level rise. Science Advances. DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.abb6376

Chevalier, M., Davis, B., Heiri, O., Gajewski, K., Seppa, H., Lacourse, T., Guiot., J., Marsicek, J., Tipton, J., Dawson, A., Holmström, L., Izumi, K., Maezumi, S.Y., Finsinger, W., Chase, B. M., Kühl, N., Telford, R.J., Zanon, M., Phelps, L., Carter, V., Mauri, A., Vallè, F., de Vernal, A., Goring, S., Chaput, M., Sommer, P., Kupriyanov, D., Nolan, C. (2020). A review of pollen-based climate reconstruction techniques for late Quaternary studies. Earth-Science Reviews. DOI: 10.1016/j.earscirev.2020.103384

Iriarte, J., Elliott, S., Maezumi, S. Y., Alves, D., Gonda, R., Robinson, M., Gregorio De Souza, J., Handley, J, Watling, J. (2020). The origins of Amazonian landscapes: plant cultivation, domestication and the spread of food production in tropical South America. Quaternary Science Reviews. DOI: 10.1016/j.quascirev.2020.106582

Smith, R. J., Mayle, F.E., Maezumi, S.Y., Power, M.J. (2020). Relating pollen representation to an evolving Amazonian landscape between the last glacial maximum and Late Holocene. Quaternary Research. DOI: 10.1017/qua.2020.64

de Oliveira, E., Feldpausch, T., Marimon, B., Iriarte, J., Morandi, P., Nogueira, D., Aragão, L., Brasil, I., Maezumi, S. Y., Marimon Jr.,  B. (2020). Legacy of Amazonia Dark Earth soils on forest structure and species composition. Global Ecology and Biogeography.DOI: 10.1111/geb.13116

McLauchlan, K.K., Higuera, P.E., Miesel, J., Rogers, B.M., Schweitzer, J., Shuman, J.K., Tepley, A., Varner, J.M., Veblen, T.T., Adalsteinsson, S.A., Balch, J.K., Baker, P., Batllori, E., Bigio, E., Brando, P., Cattau, M., Chipman, M.L., Coen, J., Crandall, R., Daniels, L., Enright, N., Gross, W.S., Harvey, B.J., Hatten, J.A., Hermann, S., Hewitt, R.E., Kobziar, L.N., Landesmann, J.B., Loranty, M.M., Maezumi, S.Y., Mearns, L., Moritz, M., Myers, J.A., Pausas, J.G., Pellegrini, A. F. A., Platt, W.J., Roozeboom, J., Safford, H., Santos, F., Scheller, R.M., Sherriff, R.L., Smith, K.G., Smith, M.D., Watts A.C. (2020). Fire as a fundamental ecological process: research advances and frontiers. Journal of Ecology. DOI: 10.1111/1365-2745.13403

Gregorio de Souza, J., Robinson, M., Maezumi, S.Y.,  Schaan, D., Urrego, D., Mayle, F., Whitney, B., Cruz, F., Novello, V., Alves, D., Capriles, J.M., Rostain, S., Apaestegui, J., Hooghiemstra, H., Hoggarth, J., Power, M., Iriarte, J. (2019). Climate change and cultural resilience in late pre-Columbian AmazoniaNature Ecology and Evolution.  DOI: 10.1038/s41559-019-0924-0. 

Arienzo, M.M.; Maezumi, S.Y.; Chellman, N.J.; Iriarte, J. (2019) Pre-Columbian Fire Management Linked to Refractory Black Carbon Emissions in the Amazon. Fire. DOI: 10.3390/fire2020031

Kistler, L., Maezumi, S.Y., de Souza, J.G., Przelomska, N., Malaquias Costa, F., Smith, O., Loiselle, H., Loiselle, H., Ramos-Madrigal, J., Wales, N., Ribeiro, E.R., Morrison, R.R., Grimaldo, C., Prous, A.P., Arriaza, B., Thomas, M., Gilbert, P., de Oliveira Freitas, F., Allaby, R. (2018). Multi-proxy evidence highlights a complex evolutionary legacy of maize in South America. Science. DOI: 10.1126/science.aav0207

Maezumi, S.Y.,  Alves, D.,  Robinson, M., Gregorio de Souza, J., Levis, C., Barnett, R.L., de Oliveira, E.A., Urrego, D., Schaan, D., Iriarte, J., (2018) The legacy of 4,500 years of polyculture agroforestry in the eastern Amazon. Nature Plants. DOI: 10.1038/s41477-018-0205-y

Maezumi, S.Y., Robinson, M., De Souza, J.G., Urrego, D., Schaan, D., Alves, D., Iriarte, J. (2018) New insights from pre-Columbian land use and fire management in Amazonian Dark Earth forests. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution. DOI: 10.3389/fevo.2018.00111

Robinson, M., De Souza, J.G., Maezumi, S.Y., Cárdenas, M., Pessenda, L., Prufer, K., Corteletti, R., Scunderlick, D., Mayle, F.E., De Blasis, P., Iriarte, J. (2018) Uncoupling human and climate drivers of late Holocene vegetation change in southern Brazil. Scientific  Reports. DOI: 10.1038/s41598-018-24429-5

Maezumi, S.Y., Whitney, B.S., Mayle, F.E., Gregorio de Souza, J., Iriarte, J. (2017) Reassessing Climate and pre-Columbian Drivers of Paleofire Activity in the Bolivian Amazon. Quaternary International. DOI: 10.1016/j.quaint.2017.11.053

Marlon, J.R., Kelly, R., Daniau, A-L., Kelly, R., Vannière, B., Power, M.J., Bartlein, P., Higuera, P., Blarquez, O., Brewer, S., Brücher, T., Feurdean, A., Gil Romera, G., Iglesias, V., Maezumi, S.Y., Magi, B., Mustaphi, C.J.C.,  Zhihai, T. (2016) Reconstructions of Biomass Burning from sediment charcoal records to improve data-model comparisons.  Biogeosciences.DOI: 10.5194/bg-13-3225-2016

Maezumi, S.Y., Power, M.J., Mayle, F.E., McLauchlan, K.K., Iriarte, J. (2015) The Effects of Past Climate Variability on Fire and Vegetation in the Cerrãdo Savanna of the Huanchaca Mesetta, NE Bolivia. Climate of the Past. DOI: 10.5194/cp-11-835-2015

Marlon, J.R., Bartlein, P.J., Daniau, A-L., Harrison, S., Maezumi, S.Y., Power, M.J., Tinner, W., Vanniere, B. (2013) Global Biomass Burning: A Synthesis and Review of Holocene Paleofire Records and Their Controls. Quaternary Science Review. DOI: 10.1016/j.quascirev.2012.11.029

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