Jeffrey Charles Marck

Jeffrey Charles Marck

Conference Chairman, Editor-in-Chief

PhD The Institute, Australian National University, Australia

Dr. Marck studied African economic anthropology as an undergraduate at the University of Iowa in the United States; studies which included independent study in North, West and East Africa in 1968 and 1971.

His interests shifted to Oceania and then prehistory in his final undergraduate year. He then did an anthropology MA at Iowa due to dynamic researchers there specializing in Oceanic cultures and archaeology. His MA thesis focused on language in prehistory in Micronesia. Parts of it presented at the Central States Anthropological Society annual meetings in Chicago in 1974 won the Student Prize Paper award and earned his paper a place in the first volume of The Proceedings of the CSAS.

While at Iowa he also co-authored a publication with the beloved Pacific Islands archaeologist Richard Shutler Jr, a veiled complaint about certain suggestions as to the origins of MalayoPolynesian speech, showing that the possibility of a Taiwan origin had more merit, foretelling the Taiwan model as the received model for the origins of MalayoPolynesian speech as many others had more quietly expected.

He went on to do an MA in linguistics at the University of Hawaii which involved field work in Micronesia and publication of a dictionary of one of the Micronesian languages at the University of Hawaii Press.

He left academics for a number of years but returned after publications as an independent researcher in 1986 and 1991, and was at the Australian National University 1991 to 1999, completing a PhD on the prehistory of Polynesian language and culture history, working at the same time at the National Centre for Epidemiology and Population Health on sub-Saharan African population health and health behaviors.

Between archaeology, linguistics, public health and, more recently, the prehistory of social organization in Africa and Oceania in general, Marck has published about forty academic books and articles in Australia’s Archaeology and Physical Anthropology in Oceania, Pacific Linguistics, Journal of Pacific History and Health Transition Review; New Zealand’s Journal of the Polynesian Society, New Zealand Journal of Archaeology, in a New Zealand Archaeological Association book and in Te Reo; in America’s Current Anthropology, Oceanic Linguistics, a University of Hawaii Press book, a University of Utah Press book and in a Routledge prehistory volume in the United Kingdom.

His life’s work, as it were, came to a head with publication Proto Oceanic society was matrilineal (2008), foretold by his great friend Per Hage’s Was Proto Oceanic society matrilineal (1998) before his death in 2004, both publications appearing in the Journal of the Polynesian Society.

He is retired and involved in facilitating introduction of new, super producing varieties of Pacific Island breadfruit to tropical Africa and has an English language services practice. He describes himself as “Out to beat Belgium” – the world’s highest producer of dry weights of grains per hectare, a manageable task as indeed the dry weights of certain Samoan and Micronesian breadfruit varieties per hectare already do so.

He is the conference chairman and the Editor-in-Chief since 2015.