Philip J. Currie

Most Influential Person

Canadian paleontologist and museum curator

Philip J. Currie's Academic­ Rankings

Philip J. Currie
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Why Is Philip J. Currie Influential?

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Philip J. Currie is a professor at the University of Alberto in Edmonton and the founder of the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Palaeontology. He earned his bachelor of science from the University of Toronto, and an M.S. and Ph.D. in biology from McGill University. Currie has been very active in fossil discovery, working on sites in Dinosaur Provincial Park, Dry Island Buffalo Jump Provincial Park, Antarctica, Mongolia, China, and Argentina.

He was the curator of earth sciences for the Provincial Museum of Alberta while he worked on his Ph.D. So successful was he with his fieldwork that the museum had to expand. He has received multiple prestigious honors, including the American Association of Petroleum Geologists’ Michel T. Halbouty Human Needs Award, the Alberta Order of Excellence, and The Royal Canadian Geographical Society’s Gold Medal, but most notably, there have been five dinosaur species named for him: Quilmesaurus curriei, Epichirostenotes curriei, Teratophoneus curriei, Philovenator curriei, and Albertavenator curriei.

Dr. Currie worked with the China-Canadian Dinosaur Project and discovered feather impressions, cementing the theory that birds descended from dinosaurs.

The Philip J. Currie Dinosaur Museum, honoring the Pipestone Creek Bonebed (considered among the world’s richest in terms of discoveries), was opened in 2015. He was most recently awarded the Elizabeth ‘Betsy’ Nicholls Award for Excellence in Paleontology.

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According to Wikipedia, Philip John Currie is a Canadian palaeontologist and museum curator who helped found the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Palaeontology in Drumheller, Alberta and is now a professor at the University of Alberta in Edmonton. In the 1980s, he became the director of the Canada-China Dinosaur Project, the first cooperative palaeontological partnering between China and the West since the Central Asiatic Expeditions in the 1920s, and helped describe some of the first feathered dinosaurs. He is one of the primary editors of the influential Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs, and his areas of expertise include theropods , the origin of birds, and dinosaurian migration patterns and herding behavior. He was one of the models for palaeontologist Alan Grant in the film Jurassic Park.

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Philip J. Currie's Published Works

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