Senior Lecturer

Contact Information:

Department of Biological Sciences
National University of Singapore
14 Science Drive 4
Singapore 117543

Senior Lecturer, Department of History
Fellow of Tembusu College, NUS
Director, The Complete Work of Charles Darwin Online
Director, Wallace Online

6601 1163
6779 2486


The Annotated Malay Archipelago by Alfred Russel Wallace. Edited [annotated and introduced] by John van Wyhe. NUS Press, 2015. (Amazon)
Charles Darwin in Cambridge: The most joyful years. WSP, 2014. (Hardcover paperback Kindle)
Dispelling the Darkness: Voyage in the Malay Archipelago and the discovery of evolution by Wallace and Darwin. WSP, 2013. ( Paperback Kindle)
Alfred Russel Wallace: Letters from the Malay Archipelago. Foreword by Sir David Attenborough. OUP, 2013. ( Paperback Kindle)
Charles Darwin’s shorter publications 1829-1883.CUP, 2009. (Amazon Kindle)
Charles Darwin’s notebooks from the voyage of the Beagle. CUP, 2009. (Amazon)
Darwin in Cambridge. Christ’s College, 2009.
Darwin. (A. Deutsch, 2008/National Geographic, 2009.) (Amazon: UK, USA, French, Spanish)
Phrenology and the origins of Victorian scientific naturalism. Ashgate, 2004. (Amazon)
Combe’s Constitution of man, and nineteenth-century responses. Thoemmes, 2004, 3 vols. (Amazon)
Wallace Online 2012-.
The Complete Work of Charles Darwin Online 2002-.
The history of phrenology on the web 1999-.

Alfred Russel Wallace’s notebooks from the Malay Archipelago.

In progress
Wanderlust: the amazing Ida Pfeiffer.
Damning Darwin: the extraordinary evolution of the Darwin-Wallace story from 1858 – present.
Charles Darwin: A companion. A new and revised edition (with Paul van Helvert).
The letters of Johann Gaspar Spurzheim.
An iconography of Charles Darwin (with Gene Kritsky).
Darwin’s geological diary from the voyage of the Beagle

Scholarly articles and book chapters
2016, 12 Darwin’s body-snatchers? Endeavour 41, no. 1.
2016, 12 The impact of A. R. Wallace’s Sarawak Law paper reassessed. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences. vol. 60, Dec., pp. 56-66.
2016, 10 A rough draft of A. R. Wallace’s “Sarawak law” paper. Archives of natural history 43.2: 285-293.
2016, 07.17 Darwin’s discovery: The remarkable history of evolution. New scientist. pp. 35-39.
2016 The Darwin-Wallace theory of evolution. Encyclopedia of Evolutionary Biology. Elsevier, vol. 1, pp. 394-8.
2015 Annotating Wallace’s Malay Archipelago. Pulse (Dec.): 4-5.
2015 The illustrations in A.R. Wallace’s Malay archipelago (1869) and in a much-enhanced French translation in Le Tour du Monde (1870–1873). Archives of Natural History 42 (2): 358-362, figs. 1-4. (with Kees Rookmaaker)
2015 “I am Ali Wallace”: The Malay assistant of Alfred Russel Wallace. Journal of the Malaysian Branch of the Royal Society vol. 88, Part 1, No. 308 (June): 3-31.
2015 Going the whole orang: Darwin, Wallace and the natural history of orangutans. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences.
2014 A delicate adjustment: Wallace and Bates on the Amazon and “the problem of the origin of species”. Journal of the History of Biology vol. 47, issue 4: 627-659.
2014 Wallace in Singapore. In T. Barnard ed. Nature contained: Environmental histories of Singapore. NUS Press, pp. 85-109.
2013 ‘”my appointment received the sanction of the Admiralty”: Why Charles Darwin really was the naturalist on HMS Beagle. Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences vol. 44, issue 3, Sept., pp. 316-326.
2013 Alfred Russel Wallace. In Ruse ed. The Cambridge encyclopedia of Darwin and evolutionary thought. CUP, pp. 165-172.
2013 Wallace’s mystery flycatcher. Raffles Bulletin of Zoology 61 (1): 1-5, figs. 1-3. (with Kees Rookmaaker)
2012 Correcting the Darwin myths. In The Origin of Darwinism: Charles Darwin and The Origin of Species. Guardian Books.
2012 In Alfred Russel Wallace’s Shadow: His forgotten assistant, Charles Allen (1839-1892). Journal of the Malaysian Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society 85, part 2, no. 303: 17-54. (with Kees Rookmaaker)
2012 The Annie Darwin hypothesis: Did the death of his daughter cause Darwin to “give up Christianity”? Centaurus 54: 1-19 (with Mark Pallen).
2012 Wallace, Darwin and Southeast Asia: the real field site of evolution. In Gower et al. eds. Biotic evolution and environmental change in Southeast Asia. CUP, pp. 16-31.
2012 Where do Darwin’s finches come from? The evolutionary review 3, 1: 185-195.
2012 A new theory to explain the receipt of Wallace’s Ternate Essay by Darwin in 1858. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society (with Kees Rookmaaker)
2012 Charles Darwin’s  life and work 200 years on. (Dis)Entangling Darwin: cross-disciplinary reflections on the man and his legacy. Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, pp. 11-24.
2012 John Tweedie and Charles Darwin in Buenos Aires. Notes and records of the Royal Society (with Jeff Ollerton and Gordon Chancellor)
2011 Was Charles Darwin an atheist? The public domain review (28 July).
2011 Charles Darwin: A life of discovery. In M. Hutchins ed. Grzimek’s animal life, evolution. Gale, pp. 31-44. (with Angus Carroll)
2010 ‘Almighty God! what a wonderful discovery!’: Did Charles Darwin really believe life came from space? Endeavour 34, no. 3, (Sept.): 95-103.
2010 Johan Gaspar Spurzheim. Neue Deutsche Biographie 24: 770-1.
2010 Commemorating Charles Darwin. The evolutionary review 1, No. 1 (Feb.): 42-47.
2009 Charles Darwin’s Cambridge Life 1828-1831. Journal of Cambridge studies 4 (4) (Dec.): 2-13.
2009 Darwin Online and the evolution of the Darwin industry. History of Science 47 (4) No. 158: 459-476.
2009 Charles Darwin 1809 – 2009. The International Journal of Biochemistry & Cell Biology 41: 251-3.
2009 Darwin Online. Science progress 92, part 3/4, pp. 485-6.
2007 The diffusion of phrenology through public lecturing. in A. Fyfe & B. Lightman eds., Science in the marketplace: nineteenth-century sites and experiences. Chicago: University Press, pp. 60-96.
2007 Mind the gap: Did Darwin avoid publishing his theory for many years? Notes and Records of the Royal Society 61: 177-205.
2004 Was phrenology a reform science? Towards a new generalization for phrenology. History of Science xlii: 313-331.
2002 The authority of human nature: the Schädellehre of Franz Joseph Gall. British Journal for the History of Science (March): 17-42.

Historicizing contextualism. In P. Kjærgaard ed., History and ideas: science, politics, philosophy. Cambridge Scholars Press.
Introduction. Darwin’s Journal of researches. 1890 edn. Ushuaia: Zagier.

In progress
Darwin’s field notes from the voyage of the Beagle
Wallace’s Singapore burning: The riots of 1854.
The White Rajah on trial in Singapore.

Other shorter publications
2016, 06.02 Up close with sharks and dragons. NUS News.
z 2015, 01-03 Darwin in Cambridge & Wallace in the Malay archipelago. Biblioasia 10 (4): 50-55.
2015, Darwin’s Beagle Library. FoS Research Newsletter.
2014, 11.25 Is there a history of science? Yes… and it works. Asian Scientist.
2014 [Review of] Darwin: Portrait of a Genius. By Paul Johnson. The Historian 76 (2): 443-4.
2013 John van Wyhe, Will the real Alfred Russel Wallace please stand up? OUPblog
2013 Darwin did not cheat Wallace out of his rightful place in history. The Guardian (9 August).
2013 Alas, poor Wallace. teleskopos History of science – Museums (7 August)
2013 Secularism in Singapore. Rationalist Association (with Huifen Zheng)
2012 Darwin in translation. American Philosophical Society Darwin-Valentine collection.
2012 Solving the Darwin-Wallace mystery. Faculty of Science Research newsletter 17, no. 1 (June): 8-9.
2012 The mail route of Wallace’s Ternate essay. Newsletter of the Society for the History of Natural History 103: 5-6 (with K. Rookmaaker).
2011 [Review of] Smith and Beccaloni eds. Natural selection and beyond: the intellectual legacy of Alfred Russel Wallace. Nuncius. Journal of the Material and Visual History of Science
2011 [Review of] Pattison, Darwins of Shrewsbury and Dixon and Radick, Darwin in Ilkley. British Journal for the History of Science 467-468.
2010 What 1835 Chile quake taught Darwin. CNN Opinion
2010 Darwin’s Edinburgh diary. In Derry ed., Darwin in Scotland: Edinburgh, evolution and enlightenment. Whittles Publishing, pp. 111-115, 118-120.
2010 Darwin’s major works and book chapters. In Derry ed., Darwin in Scotland: Edinburgh, evolution and enlightenment. Whittles Publishing, pp. 161-3.
2009 Essential reading: Charles Darwin. BBC History Magazine 10, No. 9 (September): 90.
2009 [Review of] The voyage of the Beagle by James Taylor. BBC History Magazine 10, No. 3: 70.
2009 Darwin vs God. BBC History Magazine 10, No. 1 (January): 26-31. [Cover story]
2009 Darwin and music. Cambridge Music Festival 2009: Music and Evolution, pp. 14, 19.
2009 Darwin’s theory is still a hot debate. Cambridge Evening News (3 Feb.)
2009 Darwin and evolution: what does it matter? Mens’ Health Magazine.
2008 Charles Darwin’s Student Room. Christ’s College newsletter Oct. 08 – 14.
2008 ‘Darwin, su vida’ in Desde la memoria: Historia, medicina y ciencia en torno aDarwin Fundación de Ciencias de la Salud Darwin. Madrid, pp. 7-19.
2008 A reception study in the making? The unprecedented reception of Darwin’s private papers online. Viewpoint: Newsletter of the British Society for the History of Science (June) No. 86: 5.
2008 Darwin Online (reply to Jonathan Smith). Journal of Victorian Culture 13, 1, (Spring): 119-120.
2008 Dinner with Darwin. New Humanist Magazine (January) 123, No. 1, pp. 1517.
2008 [Review of] The correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 15. Isis (March): 99(1): 196-7.
2008 Misconceptions. The Guardian [Saturday pamphlet] (9 February).
2007 A Darwin manuscript at Christ’s College, Christ’s College Magazine no. 232, pp. 66-8.
2007 Darwin discovery [cheque at Christ’s College] Viewpoint: Newsletter of the British Society for the History of Science No. 82 (February), p. 13.
2007 The launch and reception of Darwin Online. Notes and Records of the Royal Society 61: 63-5. (With A. Basman)
2007 Chambers, Bones of contention: The fossil that shook science. John Murray, 2003. Viewpoint: Newsletter of the British Society for the History of Science 12-13.
2006 Phrenology. In J. Merriman and J. Winter, eds. Encyclopedia of Europe: 1789-1918.New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons.
2006 The Complete Work of Charles Darwin Online. D-Lib Magazine (December) 12, 12.
2006 [Review of] Michael Hagner, Geniale Gehirne. Isis 97 (1).
2006 A new life online. Endeavour 30, no. 2, p. 119.
2006 The Complete Work of Charles Darwin Online. Notes and Records of the Royal Society 60: 87-9.
2006 The history of science is dead. Long live the history of science! Viewpoint: Newsletter of the British Society for the History of Science (June) No. 80.
2005 Phrenology. Scribner’s Encyclopedia of Europe 1789-1914.
2005 Entries on Cultural Evolution, Phrenology & Psychological Materialism. Encylopedia of British Philosophy.
2005 [Review of] Finger, Origins of Neuroscience: A history of explorations into brain function, 2001. British Journal for the History of Science 38 (June): 222-3.
2005 A Reason for Everything: Natural Selection and the English Imagination. by Marek Kohn. Human Nature Review 5: 1-4.
2005 The descent of words: Evolutionary thinking 1780-1880. Endeavour 29: 94-100.
2004 Alfred Russel Wallace: in a court of his own. Evolution 58, No. 12 (December): 2840-2841.
2004 Being of my opinion about humans [review of] Moore, Being me: what it means to be human. Endeavour 28, 4 (December): 141-2.
2004 [Twelve entries in] B. Lightman ed., Dictionary of Nineteenth-Century British Scientists. 4 vols. Bristol: Thoemmes Press.
2003 George Combe’s Constitution of man and the law of hereditary descent. A cultural history of heredity II, Max Planck Institut für Wissenschaftsgeschichte, preprint series, pp. 165-74.
2003 Science vs. religion or my gods are better than your gods? The controversies over Combe’s Constitution of Man 1826-60. Intellectual News 11/12, pp. 24-31.
2003 [Various entries] Dictionary of Nineteenth-Century British Scientists. Bristol: Thoemmes Press.
2003 Charles Darwin on variation under nature. Green Trend Magazine (India)
2003 [Review of] In Darwin’s Shadow: The life and science of Alfred Russel Wallace…by Michael Shermer. Human Nature Review 3: 166-8.
2002 George Combe. The Dictionary of Nineteenth-Century British Philosophers. Bristol: Thoemmes Press, pp. 271-2.
2002 Phrenology. Skeptic’s Encyclopedia of Pseudoscience. Abc-Clio, vol. 1, pp. 170-172.

Online publications
2011 Darwin’s notes on Wallace’s Island life (1880) Text & image
2011 Darwin’s Down House notebook 1.1Text
2011 1836-7. [Reports of Darwin’s communications read to the Cambridge Philosophical Society 1835-7]. London and Edinburgh philosophical magazineText
2011 Online letter to the The History of Science Collections of the University of Oklahoma Libraries.
2010 ‘There is such disputes about…definition of species’ (2.1841) Text & image
2010 ‘Talking with Mr. Strickland = I confess that my theory must necessarily be given up’ (4.1842) Text & image
2010 ‘a sketch of the principal events in my life’. (1866-1875). Text & image
2010 Darwin’s list of fossil wood specimens from the Beagle (transcription)
2010 John van Wyhe on Tahiti. VPRO
2010 Ship’s Journal: John van Wyhe and Anthony in the footsteps of Darwin. VPRO (watch video) (YouTube
2009 Francis Darwin’s annotated copy of the Origin of Species (1859)
2009 [Memorial of A. R. Wallace for a Civil List Pension]. (1880) CUL-DAR91.95-98
2009 [Outline of the 1842 sketch of species theory].
2009 [Abstract of species theory sent to Asa Gray]. [1857]
2009 Darwin’s student bills at Christ’s College, Cambridge
2009 1909: The first Darwin centenary
2009 ‘Utricularia’ [draft of Insectivorous plants]
2008 Darwin’s Papers & Manuscripts: an introduction.
2008 Charles Darwin’s Papers Online
2008 [Notes on reading Sumner’s Evidence of Christianity]. [c. 1827.]
2008 Comparison of three versions of Darwin’s Queries about expression.
2008 [Emma Darwin’s Reminiscences of Charles Darwin’s last years.]
2008-9 1831-1836 Lecturer’s Book.
2007 [Online research guide] Natural history and biology in the nineteenth century. Department of History and Philosophy of Science, University of Cambridge.
2007 Freeman, R. B. Charles Darwin: A companion. 2d online ed. compiled by Sue Asscher (edited by John van Wyhe).
2007 Darwin’s notebooks on geology, transmutation, metaphysical enquiries and reading lists
2007 A Darwin manuscript discovered at Christ’s College after a century in darkness (Christ’s College)
2007 Introduction to Darwin Online
2007 Introduction to the Harker Catalogue, Sedgwick Museum of Earth Sciences.
2007 ‘The position of the bones of Mastodon (?) at Port St Julian is of interest’ (2.1835)
2007 [Emma Darwin’s memo about Darwin’s religious doubts] (c. 2.1839)
2006 Photograph of Charles Darwin by Maull and Polyblank for the Literary and Scientific Portrait Club (1855)
2006 Darwin and Christ’s College
2006-9 Darwin’s Beagle field notebooks. Transcribed and edited by Gordon Chancellor, John van Wyhe & Kees Rookmaaker.
2006 ‘Journal’ (1809-1881). Introduction.
2006 ‘Admissions to Christ College’ [1827]
2006 [University Museum of Zoology accession catalogue, pp. 187-8] (1897)
2006 ‘Admissions 1818-1828’ Introduction to the Admissions books.
2006 ‘Admissions 1815-1852’
2006 ‘Admissions to Christ College’ [1827]
2006 Darwin’s insects in Stephens’ Illustrations of British entomology (1829-32)
2006 Introduction to Darwin’s Catalogue of the appendages and other parts of Cirripedes, mounted as microscopical slides. (1854-5)].
2006 cheque by Charles Darwin ‘to self’ (Union Bank of London) 1872 Introduction
2005 [Photograph of a RobinBirds of Britain (March) [a bit of fun]
2005- The Darwin Manuscript Catalogue. The first and most complete union catalogue of Darwin manuscripts and papers ever published.
2005- The Freeman Bibliographical Database. The most complete bibliography of Darwin’s writings ever published.
2002-3 Editor of The Victorian Web. Edited and contributed to section: ‘Victorian science: An overview‘.


2017, 02.08 Moderator: Conversations with humanists. NUS Interfaith Society, NUS.
2016, 10 The discovery of deep progress. Keynote lecture. Victorians like us conference. University of Lisbon, Portugal.
2016, 09.30 Darwin, Wallace and the Sarawak Law. STS Seminar. Asia Research Institute, NUS.
2016, 09.08 Charles Darwin’s sexy barnacles. Work in progress seminar, Tembusu College.
2016, 09.07 tWild gathers with Herpetological Society of Singapore.
2016 Guest lecture: Harvesting Nature: Alfred Russel Wallace as Collector in Southeast Asia. Animals and the city. International Alliance of Research Universities. Global Summer Programme, Tembusu College, NUS.
2016.07.18 Damning Darwin: The extraordinary evolution of the story of Darwin and Wallace 1858-today. Leeds Humanities Research Institute, University of Leeds.
29.07.2016 Harvesting nature: Alfred Russel Wallace as collector in Southeast Asia. NUS.
26.08.2015 Damning Darwin: How Alfred Russel Wallace became “forgotten”, Work in progress seminar, Tembusu College.
16.10.2014 Alfred Russel Wallace. Guest lecture. School of Architecture and Design, NUS.
04.09.2014 How to write a book, or, The travels of Ida Pfeiffer. Work-in-Progress seminar, Tembusu College, NUS.
07.08.2014 How to bust myths in the history of science. DBS Lab talks, NUS.
03.08.2014 How to account for adaptation naturally. Nature as practice conference. NUS Museum.
23.06.2014 Alfred Russel Wallace: the true story. Science Summer Camp, Faculty of Science, NUS.
22.05.2014 The man who wasn’t Darwin: Re-discovering Alfred Russel Wallace, Aarhus University, Denmark.
20.05.2014 Dispelling the darkness, University of Warwick.
12.05.2014 Digitising Darwin: the pleasures and perils of scholarship published online. Digitising Nightingale; one-day symposium at the Wellcome Trust, London.
24.10.2013 Dispelling the Darkness: The true story of Alfred Russel Wallace and Charles Darwin. University of Birmingham.
22.10.2013 Digitizing Darwin. Centre for the Comparative History of Print, University of Leeds.
22.10.2013 In search of the historical A.R. Wallace. Work in Progress seminar. School of Philosophy, Religion and History of Science, University of Leeds.
02.10.2013 In the footsteps of Wallace. Student tea, Tembusu College, NUS.
04.09.2013 On histories of science. Cinnamon College, NUS.
29.08.2013 Forging the origin of species. Bates, Wallace and their voyage to the Amazon. Work-in-progress Seminar, Tembusu College, NUS.
06.03.13 ‘1858 and all that’ The Darwin-Wallace mystery solved. International Symposium “100 years after Wallace” Faculty of Science, National Autonomous University of Mexico.
10.06.12 Wallace in Singapore. Malaysian Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, Asia Research Institute.
09.27.12 The launch of Wallace Online, Tembusu College, NUS.  
08.30.12 Wallace’s mystery flycatcher at NUS. Work-in-progress Seminar, Tembusu College, NUS.
04.07.12 The Wallace Darwin mystery. Wallace Darwin Science Symposium, Hasanuddin University, Makassar, Indonesia.
15.11.11 Darwin and orchids. 20th World Orchid Conference, Singapore.
10.03.11 Apocalypse now! Evolution discovered in 1850s South East Asia. Work-in-progress Seminar, Tembusu College, NUS.
16.07.11 1858 and all that: When did Alfred Russel Wallace send his Ternate essay to Charles Darwin? British Society for the History of Science annual conference, Exeter University.
20.04.11 Alfred Russel Wallace and science in Victorian Singapore. Departmental seminar, Department of History, NUS.
24.07.10 Charles Darwin really was the naturalist on the Beagle. British Society for the History of Science annual conference, Aberdeen University.
25.06.10 Private blueprints for public science: the notebooks of Darwin and Wallace. William Henry Fox Talbot: Beyond Photography, CRASSH, University of Cambridge.
11.07.09 In Darwin’s pocket. The Beagle field notebooks. Darwin in the field, Sedgwick Museum, University of Cambridge.
05.07.09 Darwin’s notebooks. British Society for the History of Science annual conference, University of Leicester.
24.06.09 Darwin and the tree of life. Willi Hennig Society Meeting, Singapore Botanic Gardens.
15.05.09 Why aren’t the social sciences Darwinian? Leverhulme Centre for Human Evolutionary Studies. Cambridge University.
04.07.08 “Almighty God! what a wonderful discovery!” Did Charles Darwin really believe life came from outer space?’ British Society for the History of Science annual conference, Oxford University.
26.07.07 Darwin’s delay: another historiographical myth? The International Society for History, Philosophy, and Social Studies of Biology, Exeter.
30.06.07 Darwin and the matrix: Darwin Online and future historiography. British Society for the History of Science annual conference, Manchester University.
24.04.07 Darwin’s loss of faith. Faraday Institute, University of Cambridge.
26.02.07 Was Darwin afraid to publish? The evidence is clear. Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences, and Humanities, Evidence seminar.
11.01.07 Darwin Online. Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences, and Humanities, University of Cambridge.
04.12.06 Did Darwin delay? Popular myths about Darwin. Evolution til alle. Aarhus University, Denmark.
07.06 Mind the gap: did Darwin avoid publishing his theory? British Society for the History of Science annual conference, Canterbury University.
10.02.06 Darwin and the Galapagos finches. Darwin Day, Birmingham University.
07.11.06 Darwin in conversation with his critics, Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences, and Humanities.
11.05 Where do Darwin’s finches come from? Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences, and Humanities.
12.09.05 The famous Darwin finches. History of Science Department, Aarhus University, Denmark.
07.05 Darwin’s finches: the evolution of a legend in the history of science. British Society for the History of Science annual conference, Leeds University.
04.12.04 Darwin’s finches: the pleasures and perils of science popularisation. Aarhus University, Denmark.
2-3.8.04 The diffusion of phrenology via public lectures: Defusing anti-diffusion in the historiography of science. Popular science: 19th century sites and experiences, York University, Canada.
27.06.04 The descent of words: the content and contexts of evolutionary thinking 1780-1880. British Society for the History of Science annual conference, Liverpool University.
05.03.04 Digitizing Darwin, Research and the internet: the case of the history of science. Maison Française, Oxford University.
18.07.03 Phrenological Controversy: was it between groups or individuals? British Society for the History of Science annual conference, University of York.
20.05.03 Historicizing contextualism: a new perspective for the history of ideas. History of Political Thought Seminar, Trinity College Cambridge.
24.04.03 The ‘diffusion’ of science in the nineteenth century: sloppy metaphor or accurate description? Institutkollokvium ved Institut for Videnskabshistorie, University of Aarhus, Denmark.
01.03 George Combe’s Constitution of man and the law of hereditary descent. A cultural history of heredity, Max Planck Institut für Wissenschaftsgeschichte, Berlin.
27.07.01 Science vs. religion or my gods are better than your gods? The controversies over Combe’s Constitution of Man 1826-60. ‘Quarrels, Polemics and Controversies’, International Society for Intellectual History, Trinity College, Cambridge University.
04.01 Old phrenology and new neuroscience: false accusations? Images of the Mind, Anthropology Department, Goldsmiths College, University of London.
17.03.01 Phrenology: an international science. European conference on physiognomy. École Normale Supérieure, Paris.
27.11.00 Spurzheim: co-founder of phrenology or plagiarist? Cabinet of Natural History (Cambridge Group for the History of Natural History), HPS Cambridge University.
31.01.00 Travels of a Craniologist: Franz Joseph Gall and his European lecture tour 1805-1807. Cabinet of Natural History (Cambridge Group for the History of Natural History), HPS Cambridge University.
12.01.00 “phrenological, which is another word for natural”: Reassessing the British phrenology debates 1815- c. 1830, British Society for the History of Science Conference, HPS Cambridge University.


2017, 03.08 (with Frans de Waal) Being human: ethics, religion and our ancestry. Yale NUS College, Singapore.
2017, 02.27 Wanderlust: The amazing Ida Pfeiffer. Asian Civilizations Museum, Singapore.
2016, 08.25 Keynote lecture. Komodo expedition. The conservation conversation. UTown, NUS.
08.06.2016 Charles Darwin’s sexy barnacles. NTU Centre for Contemporary Art Singapore
09.26.2015 In search of the historical Wallace. Science Centre Singapore, NUS Faculty of Science Alumni lecture.
06.20.2015 Keynote lecture. Asian Humanism Conference 2015.
13.05.2015 Who was Ali? Galerie Steph. Singapore.
03.21.2015 Historical myths. TEDxNUS, National University of Singapore.
01.11.2014 The World Before Singapore. Singapore Writers Festival.
31.10.2014 The prospects of a garden city [moderator]. Singapore Writers Festival.
07.31.2014 Darwin and Wallace. National Library of Singapore.
21.07.2014 The natural history of Singapore. History Festival, National Museum of Singapore.
26.06.2014 How evolution was uncovered by creationists. Science café, Singapore.
27.05.2014 Will the real Alfred Russel Wallace please stand up? Hay Festival, Hay-on-Wye.
13.12.2013 Dispelling the Darkness: The True Story of Darwin, Wallace and the Discovery of Evolution in Southeast Asia. Asian Civilizations Museum, Singapore.
20.11.2013 Keynote lecture. Launch of Island adventurer: Alfred Russel Wallace, Science Centre Singapore.
10.11.2013 Popularizing science. Singapore writers festival.
23.10.2013 A.R. Wallace: Specimen collector (and naturalist). Alfred Russel Wallace and his Legacy – Wallace100 conference. The Natural History Museum (London).
21.10.2013 Wallace and Darwin: what really happened? Alfred Russel Wallace and his legacy. The Royal Society. click for audio
19.10.2013 How we found out evolution is true. TEDxNTU.
15.08.2013 Booklaunch: Dispelling the darkness. Bookhaven, NUS, Singapore.
04.07.2013 Wallace’s eureka moment: The discovery of natural selection. The Natural History Museum (London).
23.02.2013 The life and achievements of Darwin. Darwin Day. Woodlands Regional Library, Singapore.
27.04.2012 Alfred Russel Wallace in South East Asia: the true story. Asian Civilizations Museum.
13.04.2012 Darwin & Wallace. The Mystery Solved. Science in the Café, Science Centre, Singapore.
12.02.2012 Charles Darwin. Humanist Society of Singapore.
11.02.2012 Charles Darwin the true story. National Geographic, Vivo City, Singapore.
14.11.2011 Alfred Russel Wallace in South East Asia: the true story. Asian Civilisations Museums (Singapore).
21.04.2011 Solving the Darwin-Wallace Mystery of 1858. Asian Research Institute, National Museum of Singapore.
16.03.2011 Blinkbl_nk, Brewerkz at Riverside Point, Singapore.
12.02.2011 Darwin Day. Humanist Society of Singapore.
27.01.2011 Science lunchtime talks, Faculty of Science, NUS.
16.10.2010 TEDxNUS, NUS.
18.09.2010 Keynote lecture. National Institute of Technology Durgapur, India.
09.02.2010 San Diego State University, California.
07.02.2010 Keynote lecture. Stanford University, California.
07.02.2010 Why Darwin really gave up Christianity. The Humanist Community of Silicon Valley, California.
04.12.2009 Porto University, Portugal.
28.11.2009 National Museum of Ireland, Dublin.
27.11.2009 Oundle School.
12.11.2009 Darwin Day at Aarhus University, Denmark.
13.10.2009 Darwin Society, Christ’s College, Cambridge.
11.10.2009 Ilkley Playhouse Wildman Studio, Weston Road, Ilkley.
26.09.2009 Christ’s College Alumni lecture.
26.09.2009 Cambridge Library Group.
23.09.2009 Centre for Life in Newcastle upon Tyne.
16.09.2009 Life and Earth Scientists: SE Asian Gateway Meeting at Royal Holloway, University of London.
09.09.2009 Department of History, NUS.
07.09.2009 Department of Biological Sciences, NUS.
24.07.2009 Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institution.
27.06.2009 University of Northampton.
22.06.2009 NUS.
13.06.2009 Cambridge Local Girton Association, Girton College, Cambridge.
22.05.2009 University of Birmingham.
16.05.2009 Darwin in London. Hunterian Museum at the Royal College of Surgeons & Grant Museum of Zoology.
06.05.2009 Cambridge University atheist & agnostic society, Cambridge Union.
21.04.2009 Mid-Maine Global Forum, Waterville, Maine.
20.04.2009 Colby College, Waterville, Maine.
17.04.2009 Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County, Cincinnati.
16.04.2009 University of Cincinnati, Ohio.
10.04.2009 Huntingdon Library, Los Angeles, California.
09.04.2009 Oklahoma University.
08.04.2009 University of Wisconsin-Parkside, Wisconsin.
04.04.2009 Rocky Mountain Dinosaur Resource Center, Colorado.
03.04.2009 American Association of Physical Anthropologists, Chicago.
01.04.2009 Case Western Reserve University Cleveland, Ohio.
30.03.2009 Boston University, Massachusetts.
28.03.2009 Ramsbottom Lecture, Society for the History of Natural History, National Museum of Wales.
12.03.2009 Clare College Research Symposium 2009.
22.02.2009 National History Museum of Denmark, Copenhagen.
13.02.2009 Winchester Discovery Centre.
12.02.2009 Christ’s College, Cambridge.
09.02.2009 University of St Andrews.
5-6.02.2009 Natural History Museum, Milan.
26.09.2008 What Darwin really said about humans. British Council, Cafe Scientifique. Athens-Sofia.
19.09.2008 Darwin’s life. Shrewsbury School, Shrewsbury.
07.05.2008 Charles Darwin – his life and legacy. Residencia de Estudiantes, Madrid, Spain.
08.02.2008 A century of celebrating Darwin: The evolution and extinction of historical myths. Darwin industries Inc. Getting in gear for 2009. University of Aarhus, Denmark.
14.11.2007 Rediscovering Darwin: The real story of Darwin’s finches. 11th Annual Grant Lecture, Grant Museum of Zoology, University College London.
20.10.2007 Launch of Darwin Online. Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences, and Humanities, Cambridge University.
22.09.2007 Did Darwin really avoid publishing his theory of evolution? Alumni lecture, Christ’s College, Cambridge.
15.09.2007 Darwin’s delay. Alumni lecture, Christ’s College, Cambridge.
07.07.2007 Darwin and Christ’s College. Alumni lecture, Christ’s College, Cambridge.
18.04.2007 Did Darwin really delay publishing his theory for many years? Natural History Museum, London.
26.04.2006 Darwin’s Finches. Icons of the Galapagos, British Library.
28.09.2005 Darwin and evolution. Natural History Museum, Aarhus, Denmark.
28.09.2005 Darwinising the history of ideas. Society for the History of Ideas, Aarhus University, Denmark.
23.03.2003 What is science popularisation? History of Science Popularisation, University of Aarhus, Denmark.
28.12.2001 Naturforscher oder Scharlatan? Der Schädellehrer Franz Joseph Gall (1758-1828). Sitzungssaal of the Rathaus of Weil der Stadt, Germany.

Professional Activities

2012- Professorial Fellow of Charles Darwin University, Australia.
2011- Fellow of Tembusu College, NUS.
2011- Organizer of the Work-in-progress seminar, Tembusu College.
2010- Scientific Associate, The Natural History Museum (London).
2010-11 Joint Appointment to the University Scholars Programme, NUS.
2009- Senior Lecturer, Department of Biological Sciences and Department of History, NUS.
2009- Associate of the Science, Technology & Society (STS) Cluster, FASS, NUS.
2009- Associate of the Asia Research Institute (ARI), NUS.
2009- Fellow of the Linnean Society of London.
2009- Editorial Board of The evolutionary review.
2007-9 Darwin 2009 Committee, University of Cambridge.
2005-9 Editorial Board of Centaurus.
2005- Life member of the Biological Society, University of Cambridge.
2005-10 Bye-Fellow, Christ’s College, Cambridge.
2005-9 Member of Regents House, University of Cambridge.
2005-8 Director of the Wheeler Library of the British Society for the History of Science.
2005-8 Editor of the British Society for the History of Science Monograph series.
2005-8 Member of Council and Trustee of the British Society for the History of Science.
2005 Visiting Associate Professor, History of Ideas Department, University of Aarhus, Denmark.
2003-5 Research Fellow, Correspondence of Alfred Russel Wallace Project, Open University.
2002- Founder and Director of The Complete Work of Charles Darwin online.
2002-3 Senior Research Fellow, University Scholars Programme, NUS.
2002-3 Editor of Science section of the Victorian Web.
2001-10 Affiliated Research Scholar, Department of History & Philosophy of Science, University of Cambridge.
1999- Member of The Cambridge Historical Society.
1999-2000 Organizer of the Pan-historical Methods seminar, History Faculty, University of Cambridge. (An interdisciplinary seminar for presenting specialized historical research to a general historian audience.)

Outreach & Media

Select media interviews and documentaries etc. (excluding indirect media coverage, for which see: Press)
2017    BBC Travel, Times Higher Education Supplement, Second Wind Magazine, NUS News.
Broadcasting: Kepach Productions, Italy.
2016    BBC Earth, BBC world service, Scientific American, Dundee Courier, Discover magazine, Der Standard (Austria), New Scientist Live webcast, NUS News, Second Wind Magazine.
Broadcasting: BBC world service, SKY Arts (UK TV), First Look Asia [Breakfast], Channel NewsAsia, Flat Spoke Media.
2015    Huffington Post, Nature, Euroscientist, Straits Times, National Geographic, Prestige magazine, NUS Press News.
Broadcasting: Channel NewsAsia.
2014    The Guardian, Nature, Nature News, Straits Times on Sunday, AsiaOne news, Asian Scientist, Science Magazine,,, Discover Magazine, Open Science World, The Scientist, Zeit Online, Heise Online, Information Today, Digital Journal, Popular Science, Engadget, io9, Siliconrepublic, Arstechnica, UPI Top News, Phys.Org, Hyperallergic, The kidz parade, Library Journal,, Discover Magazine, The Business Times [Singapore], The Scientist, Digital Journal, Popular Science, OmniSci, Faculty of Science: Research.
Broadcasting: BBC Radio Shropshire, ABC Radio Melbourne, BBC Radio 4.
2013    The Guardian,The Financial Times, Straits Times, Straits Times on Sunday, BBC Wales, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Neuer Züricher Zeitung, The Scientist, Asian Scientist, Canada Free Press, Northern Echo, OSAY, 2013, NUS Faculty of science annual report, NUS Faculty of Arts and Social Science. Research, NUS Newshub.
2012    The Guardian, Science, BBC News, The Daily Mail, Science daily, Zeit Online. Wissen, NRC Handelsblad (Netherlands), El Mundo, Veja (Brazil), Ciência Hoje (Brazil), TG Daily,, The Press (New Zealand), The Humanist, NUS Science faculty newsletter, NUS Annual report.
Broadcasting: Channel NewsAsia, BBC World Service Newshour Radio, BBC World TV Newsday (TV), NUS Video Cast, Atheist Talk Radio 950AM KTNF Minnesota, USA.
2011    Nature news, NPR (USA), Artemon Films and Sweet Fern Productions (interviews), Straits Times.
2010    CNN, BBC Brazil, PBS Newshour, The Statesman (India).
2009    BC Canada TV, BBC Arabic Television, Aargauer Zeitung/Mittellandzeitung (Switzerland), BBC News website, British Council Podcast, Berliner Zeitung, Cambridge Evening News, Clarin newspaper (Argentina), Daily Express, de Volkskrant (Netherlands), Südostschweiz, El Mundo (Spain), El País (Spain), Ely Standard, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Hamburger Abendblatt, History Today, International Herald Tribune, Lush Magazine, Mail Online, Metro, Nature, National Geographic, Novinky (Czech Republic), Politiken (Denmark), Rhein Zeitung, Science magazine, Scientific American, Spektrum der Wissenschaft (Germany), Telegraph, Chronicle of Higher Education, Economist, Guardian, Herald, Independent, New York Times, Sun, Yorkshire Post, Blick [Universität Würzburg], Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger, BIOspektrum, Blick [Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg] et al.
Broadcasting: BBC 1, Euroblick BR3 (TV) Germany, BBC Look East (TV), CBC Radio Canada (TV); National Public Radio (USA), NPR Radio (Wisconsin, USA), WRJN Radio (Wisconsin, USA), FM4 Österreichischer Rundfunk (Austrian radio), BBC Radio 4, BBC Radio Cambridgeshire, ABC Radio (Australia), Guardian podcast, NRK (Norwegian radio), TalkSport radio, Breakfast, Irish News Talk Radio, et al.
2008    The Times Literary Supplement, Guardian, Science Magazine, New Scientist, New Humanist Magazine, Independent, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Stern, El Mundo, El País, Marianne (France), 24 Hours (Bulgaria), Bilim ve Teknik (Turkey), Weekendavisen (Denmark), Sunday Express, USA Today, BBC News website, et al.
Broadcasting: BBC 1 Breakfast (TV), Today Programme BBC Radio 4, David Attenborough’s Darwin and the Tree of Life, ABC Radio Canberra & central, RTE Radio 1, Ireland, Irish NewsTalk Radio, ITV Anglia TV, BBC Shropshire, BBC Wales, BBC Radio Five, BBC Radio Cambridgeshire, BBC Radio Kent, BBC World Service, Brazil, National Public Radio (USA), Voice of America, Talksport radio (UK), Austrian public radio, et al.
2007    Nature (including 2 page feature on Darwin’s delay); New Scientist; Daily Express, Daily Mail; Daily Telegraph, Evening Telegraph, Daily Star, Guardian, London Metro, USA Today, Down to Earth magazine (Delhi), Cambridge Evening news; Cambridge Library Group Reflections, New Scientist; BBC News website, Spektrumdirekt (Germany), Portafolio, Behavioral Healthcare, et al.
Broadcasting: BBC Look East (TV); BBC News (TV); Today Programme BBC Radio 4; BBC Radio 3; CBC Radio; Colourful Radio (UK); Radio Cambridgeshire, Breakfast; Radio Shropshire, et al.
2006    Times, Nature, Independent; New Scientist, Scientific American, Singapore Today; Sueddeutsche Zeitung, Financial Times, Research Horizons, Cambridge RSD; Library Journal, Cambridge Evening News, BBC News website, Nature Reviews Genetics, China Daily (North American ed. New York) et al.
Broadcasting: Anglia TV; BBC 1 Breakfast (TV); BBC News 24; BBC World TV; BBC World Service (TV); Look East (TV); Canadian Broadcasting Corporation; CNN News; BBC Radio 4 News Briefings; BBC Radio 4 Today Programme; BBC Radio Cambridgeshire; BBC Radio Scotland; BBC Radio Severn; BBC Radio Shropshire; BBC Radio Wales, et al.
2005    Nature; Times Higher Education Supplement; Times, Cambridge Evening News. Broadcasting: Austrian public radio.
2004    American Scientist, Science.
2001 Geschichte der Wissenschaften portal. Broadcasting: BBC Radio 4 documentary: Victorian Calling Cards, George Combe, Channel 4 (TV); Phrenology (2 hour documentary) Bfs Entertainment.
2000    Hippocrates. Broadcasting: Granada (TV).
1999    Guardian, Lancet, USA Today, Exploration Magazine.

Historical consultant:
BBC1; BBC2; BBC Scotland; BBC Radio 4; BBC World Service, BBC Earth, BBC Travel, Channel 4, Australian Broadcasting Corporation, The Guardian, National Geographic, New York Times, Country Life, Interior World, the Wellcome Trust, Bfs Entertainment, KQED TV (USA), Worshipful company of playing card makers, 67 Pall Mall, TVBrazil, Madrid TV, Tinopolis, Illuminations Media, The travellers, VPRO (Dutch Television), CNN, British Council, Channel NewsAsia, Okto, Science Centre Singapore, University of Oklahoma Libraries, The Huntington Library et al.