Curriculum vitae

Michael J. Benton

Office: Life Sciences Building Room 118
Telephone: +44 (0)117 394 1208
Fax: +44 (0)117 925 3385

Academic career:

1997- : University of Bristol, Professor of Vertebrate Palaeontology
1992-6: University of Bristol, Reader
1989-92: University of Bristol, Lecturer
1984-9: Queen’s University of Belfast, Lecturer
1982-4: Trinity College, Oxford, Junior Research Fellow
1981-2: Nature Conservancy Council, Higher Scientific Officer
1978-81: University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne (PhD). PhD Title: The Triassic reptile Hyperodapedon from Elgin: functional morphology and relationships.
1974-8: University of Aberdeen (BSc Zoology)


2016-7: Head of School of Biological Sciences, University of Bristol
2012-4: President, Palaeontological Association, London
2010-4: President, International Paleontological Association
2006-8: President, Geologists’ Association, London
2004-8: Head of Department of Earth Sciences, University of Bristol
2001-4: Head of Department of Earth Sciences, University of Bristol


Foulerton Award, Geologists’ Association, 2022
Order of the British Empire (OBE), 2021
Jean Baptiste Lamarck Medal, European Geosciences Union, 2020.
European Research Council Advanced Research Grant, 2018-2024
Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS), 2014
Edward Bass Distinguished Visiting Scholar, Yale University, 2009
Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh (FRSE), 2008
T. Neville George Medal, Geological Society of Glasgow, 2006
Lyell Medal, Geological Society of London, 2005
Entry in Who’s Who, 2003- .
Annual Guest Lecturer, Irish Geological Association, 2001.
Scott Simpson Memorial Lecture, Ussher Society, 1997.
Lyell Fund, Geological Society of London, 1992.
Lyell Lecturer, British Association for the Advancement of Science, 1991.
Best paper, Palaeontological Association, 1984.
NERC Special Competition Research Studentship, 1978-1981.


A list of my publications may be found here.

PhD students

A list of my current and former PhD students may be found here

Thematic web pages

Dinosaur feathers and colour

The Permian-Triassic mass extinction


Resources and downloads, including ‘Fossil Record 2’

The Bristol Dinosaur Project

‘Dinosaurs Rediscovered’ – new book (published April 2019)

‘History of Life’ – new book (published September 2019)