Varsha completed her PhD in Biological Anthropology from New York University, USA in January 2003. She worked as a Post Doctoral Research Associate at George Washington University (2003-2004) and the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign (2004-2006). She joined the University of Melbourne as a Research Fellow in 2006 and is currently a Lecturer in the Department of Anatomy and Neuroscience.
Varsha’s research interests lie in understanding the processes that govern the diversification of populations into subspecies and species, and in seeking the morphological, especially dental correlates of this evolutionary process. She specializes in the dental morphology of the living apes – chimpanzees, gorillas, orang-utans and gibbons, and is currently working on a project funded by the L.S.B. Leakey Foundation developing models based on apes to address questions relating to the taxonomy and phylogeny of fossil hominids. Varsha is also involved in a bioarchaeology research project in the Republic of Georgia, studying the physical anthropology of human skeletal remains from archaeological sites at the cross-roads of major human migration routes.
National Science Foundation Doctoral Dissertation Research Improvement Grant (Co-PI) Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research Predoctoral Grant L.S.B. Leakey Foundation Doctoral Research Grant L.S.B. Leakey General Research Grant
Education and training
New York University 2003
New York University 1995
New York University 1992
University of Pune 1986
University of Bombay 1984
Awards and honors
Professional Development Grant, American Association of Physical Anthropologists,
University of Illinois Incomplete List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent by their Students, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign,
Ales Hrdlicka Student Prize, American Association of Physical Anthropologists,