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Patrick Vinton Kirch is an archaeologist who studies Oceanic and Polynesian prehistory. He is a Professor of Integrative Biology at the Class of 1954 Professor of Anthropology at the University of California, Berkeley. He also serves as Curator of Oceanic Archaeology in the Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology, and was director of that Museum from 1999 to 2002.
He has published widely: many articles and nine books. He is known for his belief that practitioners of archaeology, historical linguistics, human genetic studies, ethnology, and archival historical research can work together to give a fuller picture of the past than any discipline alone could do. In 1997 Kirch was awarded the John J. Carty Award from the National Academy of Sciences. He is a Doctor Honoris Causa of Universite de Polynesie Francaise (2016).
In 1984, Kirch became the Director of the Burke Museum in Seattle, Washington, and an Associate Professor at the University of Washington.
In 1989, he took a position at the University of California, Berkeley in the Department of Anthropology. He later took a joint appointment in the Department of Integrative Biology.
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