SFI has named evolutionary anthropologist Paul Hooper as its new Director of Education. 

Hooper, a former Omidyar Fellow, joined SFI’s education office January 30, 2017 to produce and direct the Institute’s iconic summer schools, mentorships, courses, and online educational resources. 

“I am simply thrilled to lead SFI’s educational mission to bring the best of complexity science to the world,” Hooper says. 

Hooper is an evolutionary anthropologist whose research centers on the co-evolution of human economic systems, demography, and social structure. During his Omidyar Fellowship from 2012 to 2014, he traveled to Bolivian Amazonia twice a year to study health and social support among the Tsimane forager-farmers, returning to SFI to mathematically model the social structures he observed. 

In his new role at the Institute, he’s eager to introduce the next generation of complexity scholars to some of the tools and concepts that advanced his own research.  

“We are all very enthusiastic that Paul has agreed to join SFI and direct education,” says President David Krakauer. “Paul has a unique combination of educational experience, complexity knowhow, creative ideas about new forms of educational activity and outreach, and the trained anthropologist’s eye and skills for navigating through what is surely one of culture’s more complex institutional structures – the educational system.” 

Before re-joining the Institute in his new role, Hooper taught anthropology at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia.  He holds a Ph.D. in evolutionary anthropology from the University of New Mexico, and earned his A.B. in near eastern studies from Princeton University.