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Associate Prof Halcrow, of the anatomy department, also yesterday gave the annual Carl Smith Research Medal lecture, on campus.
Her talk was entitled "Children as canaries in the coal mine: Modelling social and environmental change in prehistory".
The talk also reflected on recent research that highlighted the importance of investigating health near the start of life, to answer major questions about our past.
The university awards the medal to recognise the scholarly achievement of researchers in the early stages of their career, who must have worked at the university for at least two years but for less than 10 years as a researcher.
The medal is accompanied by a $5000 grant for personal scholarly development.
Prof Halcrow's research focuses on infant and childhood health and disease in prehistoric Southeast Asia and South America.
She considers central archaeological questions of the intensification of agriculture and human responses to this key time in prehistory.
Her international research includes managing the skeletal analysis and supervision of archaeological projects in Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, China and Chile.
Her research has appeared more than 70 times in various international journals and books.
The late Sir Carl Smith was a prominent Dunedin businessman and a former member of the University Council.