USF Geology

Jonathan G. Wynn


Research Interests

Stable isotope geochemistry

Global carbon cycle, and the role of soil carbon

Paleoenvironments and paleoclimate

Paleoclimatic forcing of human evolution

Geological record of fossil soils


1995 B.S., with Honors, Geology, Geological Engineering, University of Utah
1998 M.S., Geology, University of Utah, Graduate Advisor: Thure E. Cerling
2001 Ph.D., Geology, University of Oregon, Graduate Advisor: Gregory J. Retallack
2001-03 Visiting Research Fellow, and NSF International Research Fellow, Research School of Earth Sciences, the Australian National University, Australia
2003-04 Research Fellow and Courtesy Research Associate, Department of Geological Sciences, University of Oregon
2004 Postdoctoral Researcher, Carbon Cycle Research Group, US Geological Survey
2004-05 Research Fellow, School of Geography and Geosciences, University of St. Andrews
2006 Assistant Professor, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Lehigh University
2006-pres. Assistant then Associate Professor, Department of Geology, University of South Florida
2013-2015 Rotating Program Officer, Earth Sciences Instrumentation and Facilities Program, National Science Foundation

Funded Research Grants

Australian Research Council, Discovery Projects 2016, Carbon, water and land use change in Australian tropical savannas: up in smoke and out to sea?, AUD$397,900, co-PI (Discovery International Award) with Lindsay Hutley, Samantha Setterfield, Michael Bird.

National Science Foundation, Sedimentary Geology and Paleobiology Program, Integrating multidisciplinary tools to study Plio-Pleistocene paleoecology of early hominins from the Omo Valley, Ethiopia, $180,000 co-PI with Zeresenay Alemseged, Matt Sponheimer, Rene Bobe.

National Science Foundation, Physical Anthropology Program, A biogeochemical study of the diet of Australopithecus afarensis, lead PI with Matt Sponheimer, Bill Kimbel, Zeresenay Alemseged.

National Science Foundation, Biological Anthropology Program, IPG: Collaborative Research: A high-resolution Analysis of unique paleoenvironmental data from key hominin sites in East Africa, $117, 251, co-PI with Christopher Campisano and others.

National Science Foundation, Sedimentary Geology and Paleobiology Program, Collaborative Research: The hominid sites and paleolakes drilling project: Acquiring a high-resolution paleoenvironmental context of human evolution, $215,231, co-PI with Christopher Campisano and others.

National Science Foundation, Arctic Natural Sciences Program: Acidification in the Arctic Ocean: Roles of Sea Ice. $201,190, lead PI with Lisa Robbins.

National Science Foundation, Intergovernmental Personnel Act replacement grant while on rotator position at NSF, $266,530.

Recent Publications

2015. Negash, E.W., Alemseged, Z., Wynn, J.G., Bedaso, Z.K. Paleodietary reconstruction using stable isotopes and abundance analysis of bovids from the Shungura Formation of South Omo, Ethiopia, Journal of Human Evolution, doi:10.1016/j.jhevol.2015.07.009.

2015. Cerling, T.E., Brown, F.H., Wynn, J.G., On the environment of Aramis: Concerning comment and replies of August 2014, Current Anthropology 56, 445-446.

2015. Thompson, J.C., McPherrron, S., Bobe, R., Barr, W.A., Reed, D., Wynn, J.G., Marean, C.W., Geraads, D., Alemseged, Z., 2015. Taphonomy of fossils from the hominin-bearing deposits at Dikika, Ethiopia, Journal of Human Evolution 86, 112-135.

2015. Forray, F.L., Onac, B.P., Tanţău, I, Wynn, J.G., Tămaş, T. Coroiu, I., Giurgiu, A.M. A Late Holocene environmental history inferred from isotopic and pollen analysis of a guano deposit in NW Romania, Quaternary Science Reviews, 127, 141-154, doi: 10.1016/j.quascirev.2015.05.022.

2015. Menning, D.M., Wynn, J.G., Garey, J.R. 2015. Coastal Karst Estuaries: A new type of ecosystem, Journal of Hydrology 527, 718-733.

2015. Knorr, P.O., Robbins, L.L., Harries, P.J., Hallock, P., Wynn, J.G., Response of the miliolid Archaias angulatus to simulated ocean acidification. Journal of Foramineferal Research. 45, 109-127.

2015. Onac, B.P., Hutchinson, S.M., Geantă, A., Forray, F.L., Wynn, J.G., Girugiu, A.M., Chifan, N.A., Coroiu, I. 2014. A 2500-year Late Holocene multi-proxy record of vegetation and hydrological changes from a cave guano-clay sequence in SW Romania, Quaternary Research, 83, 437-448, doi:10.1016/j.yqres.2015.01.007

2015. Saiz, G. Wynn, J.G., Wurster, C.M., Goodrick, I., Nelson, P.N., Bird, M.I. Pyrogenic carbon from tropical savanna burning: production and stable isotope composition, Biogeosciences 12, 1849-1863, doi:10.5194/bg-12-1849-2015.

2015. Bird, M.I., Wynn, J.G., Saiz, G., Wurster, C.M., McBeath, A. 2014. The pyrogenic carbon cycle, Annual Reviews of Earth and Planetary Sciences 43, 9.1-9.26, DOI: 10.1146/annurev-earth-060614-105038.

2014. Drapeau, M., Bobe, R., Wynn, J.G., Campisano, C.J., Dumouchel, L., Geraads, D. The Omo Mursi Formation reconsidered: a window into the East African Pliocene, Journal of Human Evolution 75, 64-79, doi: 10.1016/j.jhevol.2014.07.001

2014. Cerling, T.E., Brown, F.H., Wynn, J.G., On the environment of Aramis: Comment on White in Dominguez-Rodrigo, Current Anthropology 55, p. 469-470.

2014. Boop, L.M., Onac. B.P., Wynn, J.G., Fornos, J.J., Rodriguez-Homar, M. and Merino, A. 2014. Groundwater geochemistry observations in littoral caves of Mallorca (western Mediterranean): implications for deposition of phreatic overgrowths on speleothems. International Journal of Speleology 43: 193-203.

2014. Onac, B.P., Forray, F., Wynn, J.G., Girgui, A., Guano-derived δ13C-based pale-hydroclimate record from Gaura cu Musca Cave, SW Romania, Environmental Earth Sciences, 71, 4061-4069, doi: 10.1007/s12665-013-2789-x.

2013. Sponheimer, M.J., Alemseged, Z., Cerling, T.E., Grine, F.E., Kimbel, W.H., Leakey, M.G., Lee-Thorp, J., Manthi, F.K., Reed, K. Wood, B., and Wynn, J.G. Reply to Fontes-Villalba et al.: On a reluctance to conjecture about animal food, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA 110, E4056, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1314368110

2013. Robbins, L.L., Wynn, J.G., Lisle, J., Yates, K.K., Knorr, P., Byrne, R., Liu, X., Patsavas, M., Azetsu-Scott, K, and Takehashi, T. Baseline monitoring of the western Arctic Ocean estimates 20% of Canadian Basin surface waters are undersaturated with respect to aragonite, PLoS One 8(9): e73796, doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0073796

2013. Onac, B.P., Effenberger, H.S., Wynn, J.G., Povara, I. Rapidcreekite in the sulfuric acid weathering environment of Diana Cave, Romania, American Mineralogist, 98, p.1302-1309.

2013. Sponheimer, M., Alemseged, Z., Cerling, T.E., Grine, F.E., Kimbel, W.H., Leakey, M.G., Lee-Thorp, J.A., Manthi, F.K., Reed, K., Wood, B.A., Wynn, J.G. Isotopic evidence for Early Homini Diets: Past, Present and Future. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA, 10513-10518, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1222579110.

2013. Wynn, J.G., Sponheimer, M., Kimbel, W.H., Alemseged, Z., Reed, K., Bedaso, Z.K., and Norman, J.R. Diet of Australopithecus afarensis from the Pliocene Hadar Formation, Ethiopia, for submission to Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA, 110, 10495-10500, doi:10.1073/pnas.1222559110.

2013. Robu, M., Richards, M.P., Schwartz, C.C., Wynn, J.G., Robbins, C.T., and Trinkaus, E., Isotopic Evidence for Dietary Flexibility among European Late Pleistocene Cave Bears (Ursus spelaeus). Canadian Journal of Zoology 91, 227-234.

2013. Bedaso, Z.K., Wynn, J.G., Alemseged, Z., Geraads, D. Dietary and paleoenvironmental reconstruction using stable isotopes of herbivore tooth enamel from middle Pliocene Dikika, Ethiopia: Implications for Australopithecus afarensis habitat and food resources. Journal of Human Evolution 64, 21-38.

Research Facilities.

USFSI - USF Stable Isotope Laboratory




University of South Florida external link

USF College of Arts & Sciences external link

USF Geology external link

Contact Information

SCA 509

Geology Department
University of South Florida
4202 E Fowler Ave, SCA528
Tampa, FL 33620

+1 (813) 974-9369
+1 (813) 974-5278 (lab)
+1 (813) 974-2654 (fax)

jwynn (...)


  • GLY 6739. Principles of Stable Isotope Geochemistry
  • GLY 6825. Analytical Techniques in Geology (co-taught w/J. Ryan, T. Pichler)
  • GLY 4930. Critical Zone Biogeochemistry
  • GLY 4930. Geomechanics (co-taught with D. Roman)
  • GLY 2100. History of Life