Luca Pozzi

Romo Endowed Professor, Honors College

Luca Pozzi


My name is Luca Pozzi (he/him) and I am an Associate Professor of Biological Anthropology at UTSA. I have been at UTSA since 2016. I earned my Bachelor of Science in Biology and my MS in Animal Biodiversity and Conservation in Torino (Italy) from Università degli Studi di Torino. In 2007 I moved to New York City for my PhD in Biological Anthropology at New York University where I graduated in 2013. Before joining UTSA, I was a postdoctoral fellow at the German Primate Center in Göttigen, Germany. I am originally from Italy but have lived in many different places in the US and abroad. In addition to my research and teaching, I'm engaged in promoting diversity and social justice within and beyond academia. I served as the Chair of Pride FSA (the LGBTQ+ Faculty and Staff Association at UTSA) from 2021 to 2023 and I'm a member of the Society of Systematic Biologists Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee (DEIC). In my free time, I love to travel, listen to music, play tennis, hike, and spend time with my friends, my boyfriend, and my cat, Domino.

I’m excited by the opportunity to work closely with high-achieving students and to develop new courses that can incorporate experiential components that I can rarely implement in my regular classes. My goal is to help students gain important, real-life skills and to critically engage them in conversations about science, society, and ethics.

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I teach multiple classes across the curriculum, from introductory courses to upper division and graduate classes. Most of my courses are strongly rotted in the relevant debates in biological anthropology - from understanding human diversity in connection to race, to the evolution of sex and human sexuality, to primate conservation and the challenges we face in light of climate change. My teaching practices draw from both natural and social sciences and engage students with examples and activities that relate to their everyday lives. Recent classes I have taught include: “Introduction to Biological Anthropology,” “The Evolution of Sex,” “Genes, Health, and Ancestry,” and “Primate Evolutionary Biology.”

Research Interests

I work on several interrelated questions that are centered around primate biodiversity and conservation. My work focuses on exploring the origin of biological diversity, investigating the evolution of reproductive barriers that reduce or prevent gene flow among populations, and understanding how primates respond to human-induced environmental and climatic change. My work is mostly focused on sub-Saharan Africa, and I have conducted research in multiple countries, including Kenya, Tanzania, Madagascar Equatorial Guinea and South Africa. In 2017 I was one of the leaders of a project that led to the description of a new genus of primate for the dwarf galagos in Eastern galago, Paragalago (paper published in the Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society). More recently I have been involved in large comparative studies that focused on the evolution of pair-living (Pozzi and Kappeler, 2019 in Science Advances) and the effects of body size and activity pattern sleeping ecology within primates (Pozzi et al. 2022 in the American Journal of Biological Anthropology).